Russian bombing kills Holocaust survivortext_fields
Berlin: The Buchenwald Memorial Foundation announced that Boris Romantschenko, 96, who survived four concentration camps during World War II, was killed by a Russian missile that hit his flat in Kharkiv, Ukraine.
"It is with dismay that we have to report the violent death of Boris Romantschenko in the war in Ukraine," the Buchenwald and Mittelbau-Dora Memorials foundation said in a statement.
A bomb blew up his home in heavily-bombarded eastern city on March 18, according to his son and granddaughter, who provided information for the statement.
The foundation described Romantschenko as "a close friend" who devoted his life to educating others about the horrors of the Nazi era and had served as vice president of the Buchenwald-Dora International Committee.
Born on January 20, 1926, Romantschenko grew up in Bondari, near Sumy in Ukraine.
Despite not being Jewish, he was deported to Dortmund, Germany in 1942 as a forced labourer, as part of Nazi intimidation tactics against the Ukrainian population at the time.
A failed escape attempt landed him in the notorious Buchenwald concentration camp in 1943. He also spent time in the camps of Peenemuende, where he was forced to help build V2 rockets, and in Mittelbau-Dora and Bergen-Belsen.
"This is what they call the 'operation of denazification'," said the head of Ukraine's presidential office, Andriy Yermak, referring to Russian President Vladimir Putin's widely disbelieved claim that ridding Ukraine of Nazis was one reason for Moscow's invasion.
"The whole world sees Russia's cruelty," Yermak added.
There are still some 42,000 survivors of Nazi crimes living in Ukraine, according to the aid network.