Russia to give $1 million to Auschwitz conservation fund

(JTA) — Russia will contribute up to $1 million to the Auschwitz-Birkenau Foundation for the conservation and maintenance of the site of the former Nazi concentration camp.

Russia’s pledge was reported Tuesday by Polskie Radio. The Polskie Radio website cited a statement issued by the Russian Embassy in Warsaw, which said that support for the project is “a common moral duty as it serves the mission of preserving the memory of the huge number of victims of the Nazi camp and of other crimes against humanity.”

The four-year-old foundation is working to raise nearly $160 million for a perpetuity fund to continue to maintain the site. Twenty-four countries have contributed so far. Germany has contributed $80 million, followed by the United States with $15 million; Poland, where the camp is located, has promised about $13 million, according to Polskie Radio.

Some 155 buildings on the site are in need of repair; the money is also needed for conservation projects such as the Auschwitz-Birkenau archives, documents and objects in the museum collection.