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Romania - Medical Students Suspected of Buying Jewish Bones of Holocaust Victims

Published on: June 29, 2009 07:16 PM
By:  EJP
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The mass grave of Holocaust victims is located in Podu Iloaiei, a village near Iasi. Photo: Rabbinical Centre of EuropeThe mass grave of Holocaust victims is located in Podu Iloaiei, a village near Iasi. Photo: Rabbinical Centre of Europe

Romania - Students at the University of Iasi in Romania have allegedly been purchasing parts of skeletons from a mass Jewish grave, the Rabbinical Centre of Europe (RCE) has learned.

‪The grim discovery was made by an American Jew living in Iasi, a city in northeastern Romania, who sent an email to the Rabbinical Centre’s department of burials and cemeteries.

According to his testimony, local  medical students have purchased  human bones and skulls for research purposes from a mass grave of Holocaust victims located in Podu Iloaiei, a nearby village.

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The city of Iasi is known for a large number of institutes of higher education attracting thousands of international students, of which the University of Medicine and Pharmacy GT Popa is the most prominent.
Current enrolment includes some 50 Jewish students, primarily Israelis.

During the Holocaust two death trains left Isai after the famous pogroms on June 30th, 1941.

One of the two trains stopped in Podu Iloaiei and 1,194 Jews who died along the way from thirst and exhaustion were buried in a mass grave in the village.

The email  described an exchange between the American and the students who freely and openly offered up information about making use of the Jewish bones from the grave.

The medical students explained that each bone costs 40 dollars, which is paid to the cemetery custodian. For that price the workers dig the grave for the bones and “clean them up nicely.”

In response to the email, RCE representatives approached a number of Jewish medical students at the GT Popa school in Iasi. These students confirmed that information about the sale of human bones and skulls have circulated in the university.

This is in sharp contrast to the practice in most universities with medical departments where the students are educated using plastic parts. However, the Jewish students contacted were unable to name a direct source for the purchase of the bones.

The Rabbinical Center of Europe sent two students to Podu Iloaiei for investigative purposes. Upon reaching the cemetery, the foreign students posed as Romanian medical students.

They asked the female caretaker of the mass grave whether the purchase of a number of bones would be possible to arrange. During the ensuing discussion, which was recorded and later filed in the RCE offices, the woman did not deny being involved in such a grisly business.
Howeever, throughout the discussion the caretaker continually referred the visitors to her husband.

One Jewish student at GT Popa who asked for anonymity  for “fear of retaliation from the students and university staff,” said that it was clear that the woman was wary and was concealing information.


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Read Comments (13)  —  Post Yours »

1

 Jun 29, 2009 at 07:12 PM Anonymous Says:

this is one of the most disgusting stories ive read in a long time. this is worse than what happened in spain.

2

 Jun 29, 2009 at 06:53 PM Anonymous Says:

Can some of these people sleep at night? Do they have a heart or is it made out of stone? I think The Wizard of Oz has more of a Heart than these "morons"!!

3

 Jun 29, 2009 at 09:31 PM Anonymous Says:

Disgusting, but not any worse the Bodies Exhibitions worldwide, where corpses are put on display for the public without any consent from the victims. They were probably prisoners from China.

4

 Jun 29, 2009 at 10:33 PM Anonymous Says:

I dont understand the problem, i only understand the halachic issue but not the emotinal part of all this - am i crazy?

5

 Jun 30, 2009 at 06:27 AM anonymous Says:

Iasi was the ort of one of the biggest charigas in WW II

6

 Jun 30, 2009 at 01:31 AM HaLeiVi Says:

Reply to #4  
Anonymous Says:

I dont understand the problem, i only understand the halachic issue but not the emotinal part of all this - am i crazy?

The Halacha being, Bezayon Hammes. So I guess you don't really understand the Halacha either. Anyhow, not understanding an emotion doesn't make you crazy; perhaps autistic.

7

 Jun 30, 2009 at 12:22 AM Anonymous Says:

I am not surprised. Some years ago a man in Poland told me that this was happening in a medical school there. I believe it was in the city of Danzig.

8

 Jun 30, 2009 at 12:18 AM Anonymous Says:

I'm not surprised. Some years ago in Poland a man told me that this was happening in a medical school in there. I beolieve it was in the city of Danzig. I was very young and I did not know what to do with the information.

9

 Jun 29, 2009 at 11:57 PM MEYER Says:

THE OLD SKVERER REBBE ZATZAL WAS ONE OF A FEW THAT SURVIVED THIS TRAIN

10

 Jun 29, 2009 at 11:25 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #4  
Anonymous Says:

I dont understand the problem, i only understand the halachic issue but not the emotinal part of all this - am i crazy?

to the fellow who asks, if he doesn't understand the "emotional part" of selling Holocaust victims buried in a mass grave, is he crazy? i don't know if you are crazy, but it would be difficult to find a more heartless person.

11

 Jun 30, 2009 at 08:24 AM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #3  
Anonymous Says:

Disgusting, but not any worse the Bodies Exhibitions worldwide, where corpses are put on display for the public without any consent from the victims. They were probably prisoners from China.

Just to clearify,the bodies from the body museum are not from chinese prisons.They are unclaimed chinese bodies with no family or anyone to claim their body.

12

 Jun 30, 2009 at 08:35 AM Anonymous Says:

This story sounds suspect, after so many years the bones would not be of much use for anatomical study. Also the statement that the cemetary workers clean-up the bones, clean them from what? Other than some bits of clothing and maybe some hair, nothing should be left.

13

 Jun 30, 2009 at 12:42 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #11  
Anonymous Says:

Just to clearify,the bodies from the body museum are not from chinese prisons.They are unclaimed chinese bodies with no family or anyone to claim their body.

The museum doesn't disclose info on how they got the bodies. We can only speculate, and knowing China, it ain't nice.

14

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