France to compensate US Holocaust victims for SNCF’s role in transporting victims to Nazi camps

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Author: AFP

« SNCF : Paris va dédommager les victimes américaines de la Shoah », 5 décembre 2014

Il n'y avait pas que des Français dans les sinistres wagons qui conduisaient les déportés à une mort quasi certaine pendant la Seconde Guerre mondiale. Il y avait aussi des citoyens d'autres pays, dont les États-Unis, qui réclament, plus de 60 ans après, réparation...Paris va verser 60 millions de dollars aux Américains transportés par les trains de la SNCF vers les camps de la mort durant la Seconde Guerre mondiale...Cet accord...porte sur la création d'un fonds d'indemnisation doté par la France de 60 millions de dollars versés aux autorités américaines en faveur de "quelques milliers" de déportés non français ou de leurs familles... En contrepartie, les États-Unis se sont engagés à défendre l'immunité de juridiction dont bénéficient les entreprises étrangères sur leur sol, qui les protège de toute poursuite judiciaire ou de toutes autres formes d'action. Un sénateur avait demandé en 2013 au Congrès de réformer cette loi pour pouvoir traduire la SNCF devant les tribunaux américains...

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Article
5 December 2014

France agrees Holocaust SNCF rail payout with US

Author: BBC News

France and the US…announced a $60m (£40m) compensation fund, paid for by the French government, on Friday. Reparations will be paid to [Holocaust victims]...transported by state rail company SNCF to Nazi concentration camps…The rail company moved 76,000 Jews to Nazi camps during the Holocaust. Only about 3,000 survived. However, the company, and some historians, have argued that SNCF was forced by the occupying German army to assist in the deportations. In 2010, the SNCF chief executive expressed "profound sorrow and regret" for the…company's actions…According to US negotiator Stuart Eizenstat, survivors could receive more than $100,000 each, while spouses or heirs could get tens of thousands of dollars. The agreement still needs to be voted on by the French parliament…As part of the deal, the US government will try to end lawsuits and other claims against SNCF that have been made in Maryland, New York, Florida and California.

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Article
5 December 2014

France to compensate American survivors of Holocaust

Author: Karen DeYoung, Washington Post (USA)

France has agreed to pay reparations to American…Holocaust [survivors] who were deported to Nazi…camps in French trains, after a year of negotiations...[It] closes a loophole that has prevented some [US] citizens…from receiving French compensation…SNCF officials have formally expressed regret on a number of occasions for the company’s role...But SNCF has consistently denied cooperating voluntarily with the Nazis, noting that it was placed under German command in 1940...Holocaust survivors in [the USA]…had pursued compensation via class-action lawsuits for more than a decade. After those cases were dismissed on the basis of sovereign immunity for government-owned companies, survivors…pressed for legislation banning SNCF and its subsidiaries from receiving contracts in the United States…Anyone who applies for the compensation program will have to sign a waiver agreeing not to pursue any lawsuit…As part of the accord…the United States agrees to support French sovereign immunity in any future lawsuit.

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