Society » Real life stories
Author`s name Ольга Савка

Germany Pays Compensations to Juvenile Prisoners of War

1,5 euro for each day of captivity in a German concentration camp

Until recently, Germany has been paying compensations only to the people, who were forced to work for the German industry in fascist concentration camps and ghettos. However, juvenile prisoners of German camps now have a chance to be compensated as well.

Viktor Fyodorov was only two years old, when all of his family was forced to move to Germany. At first they arrived in Cologne, then they found themselves in Levernkrusen. When a little boy, Viktor would gaze at Bayer concern pipes from the windows of their barracks, waiting for rare occasions to see his mother. Viktor's mother, Nina, was born in 1919. She was a worker in the Zimmer concentration camp. Now she keeps an archive document together with Red Cross photographs - a gift from the Leverkrusen administration. One can see neat and well-fed workers, cooking dinner for themselves on one of her photos.

In addition to factory pipes, Viktor remembers another thing - hunger: "I have never seen apples. I saw an apple for the first time, when Americans released us. I did not know how to eat them," the former prisoner recollects.

American soldiers tried to persuade Viktor's mother not to go back home to the USSR. They promised her to help her family settle in any town or city of the United States or Australia. Nina refused. She returned back to the Soviet Union, where she had to prohibit everyone of  the family from talking and even thinking of the German camp. "We tried to conceal that we had been to Germany. They would not have let us join the Communist Party otherwise," Viktor remembers.

Viktor Fyodorov's career was rather successful  in the USSR. Ten years after being released, Viktor came to Leningrad. He studied there, served in the army and then started working at the factory Svetlana. In 1969 he became a member of the factory's housing society. It just so happened that his first place of living was situated in Dresden Street.

It was the German government that found Viktor Fyodorov and gave him a document, which confirmed his status of a juvenile prisoner. However, local Russian authorities did not find some stamp on the document and did not acknowledge Viktor Fyodorov's rights for benefits. However, the document that confirmed three years of Viktor's imprisonment in a German camp was good to obtain a compensation from the German government. Viktor Fyodorov  has been recently paid 525 euro, he will receive 900 euro more until the end of the year. This makes 1,5 euro for every day of his captivity.