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Learning English - Words in the News
 
14 April, 2008 - Published 11:03 GMT
 
Holocaust train
 
The exhibition features photos and letters from those who died

A vintage steam train commemorating the thousands of Jewish children deported and murdered by the Nazis during the Second World War has arrived in Berlin before continuing its journey to the Auschwitz concentration camp. This report from Marcus Erbe:

Listen to the story

The organisers of the exhibition say many of the 160,000 people that have visited the Train of Commemoration since it began its journey through Germany in November have been moved to tears. Their spokesman, Hans-Ruediger Minow, says Germans born at the end of the war, and especially men, weep when they see how their parents hid the truth and covered up the crimes committed in Nazi Germany. Mr Minow says the high number of visitors is proof that there are people in Germany interested in confronting their country's history.

The exhibition's organisers have, however, strongly criticised the lack of support from the national railway operator, Deutsche Bahn -- the successor of the Reichsbahn which the Nazis used to carry out the deportations of millions of Holocaust victims. Last week, the German government urged Deutsche Bahn to drop its demand of more than $110,000 in fees for the train's use of its network. The rail operator has also been criticised for refusing the exhibition the use of Berlin's new Central Station in the centre of the capital, offering the train the Ostbahnhof in former East Berlin instead.

The Train of Commemoration will continue its journey later this month and is due to arrive at Auschwitz in Poland on May 8th, the anniversary of the end of the war in Europe.

Marcus Erbe, BBC

Listen to the words

Commemoration
something that's done officially to remember and give respect to a person/people or event

been moved to tears
had such strong feelings that they couldn't help crying

weep
cry tears

covered up
didn't tell the truth about, hid, stopped others finding out about

confronting
facing up to and dealing with

criticised the lack of support
said they disapproved (of Deutsche Bahn) for not offering enough help (here, it would be more helpful if the company didn't charging money for the use of its network)

successor
someone or something that takes an official job or position after someone else

to carry out the deportations
here, to provide transport for people forced to leave their homes and sent to concentration camps

urged
strongly advised, tried to persuade

to drop
to abolish, to stop (here, asking for money)

 
 
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