Germany adds $250m. in survivors’ pensions

After months of negotiations, the German government has agreed to add $250 million to its pension program for Holocaust survivors over the next decade, the Claims Conference announced Sunday.

The change, which is expected to benefit around 6,000 elderly Holocaust survivors around the world – nearly one-third of them living in Israel – followed months of negotiations with the German Finance Ministry, the Conference said.

The “Article 2 Fund” pensions will no longer be limited to survivors whose annual income is less than $16,000.

“This was, first and foremost, an issue of principle,” said Gideon Taylor, Claims Conference executive vice president. “Since its establishment, the Claims Conference has argued that Holocaust compensation payments are symbolic and should not be based on need.”