A memorial to the Jews of the northern Greek city of Kastoria who were sent to Auschwitz by the Nazis was vandalized on Christmas Day.
The Memorial to the Jewish Martyrs of Kastoria was covered with black spray-paint by unknown vandals.
“In this place, on March 24 1944, the Nazis gathered the 1,000 Jews of Kastoria and transported them to death camps in Auschwitz. Only 35 survived,” the inscribed marble slab reads.
Local volunteers helped to clean the memorial.
Prior to World War II, the northern Greek city that was built on an idyllic lake, boasted a thriving Jewish community that actually pre-dated Christianity.
These distinctive native Greek Jews, called Romaniotes, settled in Greece around the time of Alexander the Great.
The Nazis deported more than 700 of Kastoria’s Jews to Auschwitz, wiping out the community.
A 2016 documentary highlighted the history of Kastoria’s Jews. “Trezoros: The Lost Jews of Kastoria” uses historical footage and is told by Jewish survivors of Kastoria.
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