By Arthur Max
ASSOCIATED PRESS

1:12 p.m. June 19, 2007

AMSTERDAM, Netherlands – Two more countries have endorsed opening a Nazi war archive to Holocaust museums, bringing the documents locked away for more than half a century a step closer to release, Red Cross officials said Tuesday.

Luxembourg and Greece joined seven other countries on the archive’s 11-nation governing commission that have ratified changes to a 1955 treaty that would allow museums in Washington and Jerusalem to receive copies of the 50 million pages of Nazi war records.

The two countries still must file ratification papers with the German government to complete the process, said Iris Moeker, a spokeswoman for the German Red Cross.

Only Italy and France have yet to pass the treaty amendments through their parliaments for ratification. In France, the process has been delayed by legislative elections, which ended Sunday.

The files maintained by the International Tracing Service, part of the International Committee of the Red Cross, were kept confidential to satisfy European privacy requirements, intended to protect survivors and victims from indiscriminate disclosures. But the commission agreed last year to partially lift the secrecy after years of pressure from survivors who wanted to see their own histories.