British Holocaust survivor describes ‘rampant’ cannibalism at Belsen

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British Holocaust survivor describes ‘rampant’ cannibalism at Belsen

Holocaust survivor at the Bergen-Belsen memorial.
Holocaust survivor at the Bergen-Belsen memorial.
Holocaust survivor Ezra Davids standing at the Bergen-Belsen memorial.
A Holocaust survivor Ezra Davids standing at the Bergen-Belsen memorial.

A British Holocaust survivor described how cannibalism was “rampant” among Jewish inmates at the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp, in a compensation claim released by the National Archives this week.

Harold Le Druillenec, the only British survivor found at the camp at the end of the war, said: “Jungle law reigned among the prisoners; at night you killed or were killed; by day cannibalism was rampant.”

British academics corroborated the gruesome account. Holocaust expert Prof. Dan Stone at Royal Holloway, University of London, said: “Sources indicate that cannibalism did indeed take place during the last phase of Belsen’s existence… It is referred to in a number of sources from the time and later.”

The British government later paid him £1,835 in compensation – about £30,000 today – on account of his experiences and disabilities.

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