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Rescue of the Jews in Denmark

// An operation was organized nationally in Denmark in order to rescue Jews to Sweden.

October 2, 1943 - Sweden offers asylum to Jews of Denmark
In a report to German officials in Berlin, the Swedish government offers asylum to some 7,000 Jews in Denmark. At the end of September 1943, the German plan to arrest and deport Danish Jews is leaked to Danish authorities who warn the Jewish population in Denmark and urge them to go into hiding. In response, the Danish underground and general population spontaneously organize a nationwide effort to smuggle Jews to the coast where Danish fisherman ferry them to Sweden. In little more than three weeks, the Danes ferry more than 7,000 Jews and close to 700 of their non-Jewish relatives to Sweden. Despite the Danish efforts, some 500 Jews are arrested by the Germans and deported to Theresienstadt ghetto.

June 23, 1944 - Danish delegation visits Theresienstadt
A Danish delegation joins representatives of the International Red Cross on a visit to the Theresienstadt ghetto in Bohemia. To deceive both these visitors and world opinion about Nazi treatment of the Jews, the SS beautifies the ghetto and creates the impression that Theresienstadt is a self-governing Jewish settlement. Unlike other prisoners in Theresienstadt, the 500 Danish prisoners there are not deported to concentration camps and are permitted to receive parcels from the Red Cross. On April 15, 1945, the Danish prisoners are released from the ghetto into the hands of the Swedish Red Cross. This is a result of negotiations between Swedish government representatives and Nazi officials in which Scandinavian prisoners in camps, including Jews, are transferred to a holding camp in northern Germany. These prisoners are eventually sent to Sweden where they stay until the end of the war. Out of the some 500 Danish Jews deported, about 450 survive.
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