Extermination camp

Nazi Germany used six extermination camps (German: Vernichtungslager), also called death camps (Todeslager), or killing centers (Tötungszentren), in Central Europe during World War II to systematically murder over 2.7 million people  mostly Jews  in the Holocaust.[1][2][3] The victims of death camps were primarily murdered by gassing, either in permanent installations constructed for this specific purpose, or by means of gas vans.[4] The six extermination camps were Chełmno, Belzec, Sobibor, Treblinka, Majdanek and Auschwitz-Birkenau. Auschwitz and Majdanek death camps also used extermination through labour in order to kill their prisoners.[5][6][4]

Nazi extermination camps
View of Sobibor extermination camp, 1943
The Holocaust map: The six Nazi extermination camps set up by the SS in occupied Poland, are marked with white skulls in black squares.
LocationGerman-occupied Europe (chiefly occupied Poland)
DateWorld War II
Incident typeExtermination
PerpetratorsThe SS
OrganizationsSS-Totenkopfverbände
CampChełmno, Bełżec, Sobibór, Treblinka, Auschwitz-Birkenau, Majdanek

The idea of mass extermination with the use of stationary facilities, to which the victims were taken by train, was the result of earlier Nazi experimentation with chemically manufactured poison gas during the secretive Aktion T4 euthanasia programme against hospital patients with mental and physical disabilities.[7] The technology was adapted, expanded, and applied in wartime to unsuspecting victims of many ethnic and national groups; the Jews were the primary target, accounting for over 90 percent of extermination camp victims.[8] The genocide of the Jews of Europe was Nazi Germany's "Final Solution to the Jewish question".[9][4][10]


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