German Foundation confirms exclusion of former Prisoners of War 
including IMIs from German Forced Labour Compensation Programme

GENEVA, 13 August 2001 – 
The German Foundation “Remembrance, Responsibility and Future” has officially informed the International Organization for Migration that Italian Military Internees (IMIs) are not entitled to compensation under the German Foundation Act. 
In a letter from the Foundation’s Board of Directors dated 9 August 2001, the German Foundation stresses that, in principle, all former IMIs are not eligible due to their status of Prisoners of War (POW).
The statement issued by the Foundation adds that the only exception applies to those IMI who were taken out of POW camps and detained in concentration camps of the SS. In these cases, the POW status is considered irrelevant.
“Though we realize that compensation under the German Foundation Act is a mere token, and that it is impossible to make up for all the injustices and human sufferings inflicted during the Nazi era, we sympathize with the Italian Military Internees who had to wait a long time before receiving this clarification of their status”, Dirk de Winter, the Director of IOM’s German Forced Labour Compensation Programme said. 
As the partner organization of the German Foundation in charge of the Italian claimants, IOM had stressed the need to solve the IMI issue at a very early stage and has played an advocacy role. IOM has always pressed for an early clarification of this
issue in order to avoid raising false hopes. 
Meanwhile, approximately 60,000 Italian Military Internees have filed a claim with IOM Rome and IOM stood ready to fully process those claims if the German Foundation’s decision had turned out differently.
The German Foundation Act has entered into force on 12 August 2000. IOM is responsible to make financial compensation available to non-Jewish former slave or forced labourers who do not live in Poland, the Czech Republic or a republic of the former Soviet Union. 
The filing deadline for claims has been extended until 31 December 2001. 
Forms, guidelines and information on all IOM compensation programmes are available through IOM Rome, Hotline number +39-800-598859 and on the Internet at