In a move usually reserved for parts of Eastern Europe, a Dutch watchdog on anti-Semitism has called on the City of Amsterdam to rename a municipal hall bearing the name of a former official who helped deport Jews to their deaths.
The Center for Information and Documentation on Israel, or CIDI, has urged the city government of the Dutch capital to scrap the honour it conferred more than thirty years ago to Piet Mijksenaar, a late top official with the city.
The move followed the publication last month of a historian’s book about the Asterdorp Ghetto in Amsterdam’s north, which detailed Mijksenaar’s “enthusiastic help with the deportation of Jews, and that he strove to make this process rapid and efficient,” as CIDI described it in a statement.
According to the Het Parool Daily, Mijksenaar also helped save two Jews from the Hollandsche Schouwburg – an Amsterdam theatre house that Nazi occupation forces turned into an internment camp for Jews. But his record of collaboration with the Nazi occupation had remained obscure.
The book detailing Mijksenaar’s collaboration, “Asterdorp” by Stephan Steinmetz, also revealed that Amsterdam hiked rent prices for Jews after they had been confined to ghettos comprising city-owned real estate.
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