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July 24, 2013 12:03 pm

Polish Auschwitz Survivor Sues German TV Over Inaccurate ‘Polish Death Camps’ Phrase

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The entry gate to the Auschwitz concentration camp. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

A survivor of Nazi death camp Auschwitz is suing German public television network ZDF for using the term “Polish death camps” in relation to Auschwitz and Majdanek, the website of Polish Radio reported Tuesday.

Karold Tendera, the 92-year-old secretary of Poland’s Club of Former Prisoners of German Concentration Camps, is demanding an apology from ZDF, as well as upwards of $15,500 to be paid towards charitable causes.

Tendera’s complaint relates to the promotion of a ZDF documentary about the liberation of Majdanek and Auschwitz, Nazi death camps located in Poland during the Second World War.

In promotional material, the channel used the expression “Polish death camps.”America’s Kosciuszko Foundation, together with the Polish Foreign Ministry, has been engaged in a long-running campaign to stamp out references to “Polish death camps” in the international press.

Poland wants people to recognize that while the camps were located in their country, they were run by the German Nazi regime, not by the Poles.

The campaign has had some success, Polish radio reports, with papers including The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and The San Francisco Times outlawing such references.

“If after so many complaints and protests they are still calling them Polish death camps, it must be deliberate,” Tendera told Polish Radio. Speaking with the Polish Press Agency (PAP), Tendera Said: “the younger generation does not know much about history, so the wording creates and perpetuates a false picture.””This is painful and offensive for us,” he added.

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