A set of Auschwitz prisoner tattoo stamps are on sale at the Jerusalem auction house

A Jerusalem auction house sells a set of stamps used to tattoo numbers on the arms of prisoners in the Auschwitz concentration camp, in a sale condemned by Yad Vashem, who further questioned the authenticity of the lot.

The Tzolmans auction house valued the items between $ 30,000 and $ 40,000. On Tuesday afternoon, the highest bid was $ 1,810. The auction was scheduled to end on November 9.

“The original stamps used to tattoo the number of prisoners in Auschwitz – the most shocking object of the Holocaust,” the auction house said on its website.

He did not say who had put the stamps up for sale.

According to the auction house, the kit includes 14 stamps and an instruction booklet from manufacturer Aesculup on marking cattle.

The auction house notes that the stamps to mark cattle were ten times the size of the stamps included in the set it was selling, so, according to it, there was no doubt that they were made for tattooing. prisoners.

Holocaust survivor Bracha Ghilai, 75, shows off her tattooed arm at her home in Holon near Tel Aviv, January 23, 2005. (AP / Ariel Schalit)

The set offered for sale in Jerusalem is one of three kits known to have survived the war. Another is in a military museum in St. Petersburg and the third is on display in the Auschwitz concentration camp.

Yad Vashem condemned this decision and questioned the authenticity of the stamps.

The organization told the Walla news site that based on the photo on the auction house’s website, it is difficult to determine whether the items are genuine.

When Yad Vashem chairman Dani Dayan was asked on Twitter if a donor could be found to prevent the items from falling into the wrong hands, he said the Holocaust remembrance center had no bought items at auction because he did not want to encourage “greedy traders,” adding that there may be a need for legislation on the matter.

“As a matter of principle, Yad Vashem opposes the existence of a market for Jewish or Nazi items from the time of the Holocaust and therefore does not buy such items. Fortunately, the number of items donated to Yad Vashem is tens of times higher than those exchanged, ”Dayan tweeted. “The solution may lie in legislation, and certainly not in making offers to greedy traders that will keep them going. [with the sales]. “

But Meir Tzolman, the boss of the auction house, defended the sale.

“We want to increase awareness. I am the last to underestimate or belittle the value of the Holocaust. I want to make sure that the article falls into good hands and does not disappear from the pages of history, ”he told military radio.

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