List of Righteous Among the Nations by country

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This is a partial list of some of the most prominent Righteous Among the Nations per country of origin, recognized by Yad Vashem, the Holocaust Martyrs' and Heroes' Remembrance Authority in Jerusalem. These people risked their lives or their liberty and position to help Jews during the Holocaust; some suffered death as a result.[1] As of 1 January 2016, Yad Vashem recognized 26,120 Righteous Among the Nations from 51 countries.[2]

By country and ethnic origin[edit]

These figures are not necessarily an indication of the actual number of Jews saved in each country, but reflect material on rescue operations made available to Yad Vashem as of 1 January 2016.

Country of origin Awards Notes
 Poland 6,620 The largest contingent.[3] It includes a wide variety of both individuals of different occupations and, organized activists, including Irena Sendler (Polish social worker who served in Polish Underground and Żegota resistance organization in Warsaw, saving 2,500 Jewish children); Jan Karski (who reported on situation of Jews in occupied Poland); Tadeusz Pankiewicz (Kraków pharmacist), Henryk Sławik (social worker); Rudolf Weigl (scientist); Stefan Korboński (politician), Sister Bertranda (Catholic nun); Eryk Lipiński (artist); Franciszek and Magdalena Banasiewicz (painter and his wife); Irena Adamowicz (scout leader); Maria Kotarba (Polish Resistance fighter); the Podgórski sisters (store clerks); Józef and Wiktoria Ulma (family of farmers murdered together with their six children for helping Jews); Leopold "Poldek" Socha (sewer inspector, hid a group of Jews in remote corner of Lviv sewers); writer/activist Zofia Kossak-Szczucka; and Karolina Juszczykowska (kitchen worker for Organization Todt, hid Jews in her home for which she was executed).[4] See Polish Righteous Among the Nations for additional names.
 Netherlands 5,516 On a population of 9 million in 1940 the figure represents the largest per capita number: 1 in 1,700 Dutch was awarded (Poland: 1 in 3,700; population of 24,300,000 ethnic Poles in 1939).[5] Includes two persons originally from the Dutch East Indies (now Indonesia) and one person from Suriname (William Arnold Egger). Includes Corrie ten Boom; Frits Philips who ran Philips during the German occupation; Gertruida Wijsmuller-Meier, who helped save about 10,000 Jewish children from Germany and Austria just before the outbreak of the war (see Kindertransport); she also managed the last transport to the UK on May 12, 1940 on the last ship leaving the Netherlands; Jan Zwartendijk, who as a Dutch consular representative in Kaunas, Lithuania, issued exit visas used by between 6,000 and to 10,000 Jewish refugees; includes the people who hid and helped Anne Frank and her family, like Miep Gies. Also includes the Salvation Army major Alida Bosshardt and the founder of VPRO Radio, theologian Nicolette Bruining.[6] Remarkable is the relatively large number of Protestant ministers and their wives that participated and were awarded. Also includes the German lawyer Hans Calmeyer,[7] who was recognized for his activities in the Netherlands during the war. Also includes Caecilia Loots, a teacher and antifascist resistance member, known for saving Jewish children during the war.[8] Henk Zanoli returned his medal in 2014 after some of his family members were killed in an IDF airstrike.

Also uniquely includes three organisations or collectives: the collective participants of the so-called "Amsterdam dock strike" (better known as the February strike, about 30-50,000 people who on 25/26 February 1941 took part in the first strike against persecution of the Jews in Nazi-occupied Europe); the whole village of Nieuwlande (117 inhabitants) that set up a quota-system under then alderman and later resistance fighter Johannes Post; and the resistance group, NV groep (for saving Jewish children). In Denmark, France, and Norway, as well, a group of people was recognized as a single entity.

 France 3,925 In January 2007, French President Jacques Chirac and other dignitaries honored France's Righteous in a ceremony at the Panthéon, Paris. The Legion of Honour was awarded to 160 French Righteous for their efforts saving French Jews during World War II.[9] Also includes Johan Hendrik Weidner, head of the Dutch-Paris Underground whose organization saved over 800 Jews and over 100 allied airmen.
 Ukraine 2,544 Daniil Tymchina,[10] hieromonk of the Univ Lavra (2008); Klymentiy Sheptytsky, the Archimandrite of the Studite monks of Greek-Catholic Monastery (1995); Stepan Omelianiuk (1982)[11]
 Belgium 1,707 Includes Queen Elisabeth of the Belgians. Also includes Jeanne Daman, who helped rescue two thousand Jewish children from the Nazis by taking them to shelters.[12][13][14]
 Lithuania 889 See Lithuanian Righteous Among the Nations, including Kazys Binkis and Ona Šimaitė
 Hungary 837 Including Zoltán Lajos Bay (physicist:"father of radar-astronomy"); Béla Király (commander, 56 freedom fighter) ; Géza Ottlik (author); Endre Szervánszky (composer); Paulina and Ilona Kolonits (the latter a documentary film director); Father Raile Jakab, S. J.; Margit Slachta (social activist); Blessed Sára Salkaházi, S.S.S. (Roman Catholic nun), Karig Sára[15]
 Italy 671 Including Laura and Constantino Bulgari,[16] Giovanni Palatucci, Lorenzo Perrone, Angelo Rotta, Francesco Repetto, Giorgio Perlasca,[17] the cyclist Gino Bartali and the Blessed Odoardo Focherini[18]
 Belarus 618 Including Vanda Skuratovich and Mariya Yevdokimova[19] and Dennis and Eva Vorobey
 Germany 587 Including Oskar Schindler, the businessman who saved more than 1,000 Jews by employing them in his factory; Captain Gustav Schröder who commanded the "Voyage of the Damned"; Wehrmacht officers Wilm Hosenfeld, Heinz Drossel, Karl Plagge, and Albert Battel; resistance fighter Hans von Dohnányi, and writer Armin Wegner
 Slovakia 558 Including Pavel Peter Gojdič, Dr. Michal Majercik and his wife Anna[20]
 Greece 328 Including Archbishop Damaskinos of Athens and Princess Alice of Battenberg
 Russia 197 Including Nikolay Kiselyov
 Latvia 135 Including Jānis Lipke
 Serbia 135 See Serbian Righteous Among the Nations
 Croatia 115 See: List of Croatian Righteous Among the Nations
 Czech Republic 115 Including Victor Kugler and Antonín Kalina.
 Austria 107 Including Irene Harand, Florian Tschögl, and Kurt Reinhard (List of Austrian Righteous Among the Nations)
 Moldova 79 Includes the Stoyanov family [21]
 Albania 75 See List of Albanian Righteous Among the Nations
 Norway 62 See List of Norwegian Righteous Among the Nations; the Norwegian Underground is listed as one group
 Romania 60 Includes Queen Helen of Romania, Traian Popovici (known for saving 20,000 Jews of Bukovina from deportation) and Prince Constantin Karadja, credited by Yad Vashem with saving more than 51,000 Jews[22]
  Switzerland 47 Including Carl Lutz, who helped save tens of thousands of Hungarian Jews [23]
 Bosnia and Herzegovina 42 Includes Roza Sober-Dragoje and Zekira Besrević, Mustafa and Zejneba Hardaga, Izet and Bachriya Hardaga, Ahmed Sadik [24][25]
 Armenia 24 Includes Taschdjian (Tashchiyan) family [26][27]
 Denmark 22 As per their request, members of the Danish Underground who participated in the rescue of the Danish Jews are listed as one group. The fishermen who transported Danish Jews to Sweden in 1943, however, were ineligible because they had been paid.[28]
 United Kingdom 21 This list includes Major Frank Foley but excludes Sir Nicholas Winton (who was of Jewish parentage)
 Bulgaria 20 Dimitar Peshev; Metropolitan Stefan of Sofia and Metropolitan Kiril of Plovdiv of the Bulgarian Orthodox Church
 Macedonia 10 Including Smiljan Franjo Čekada, Boris Altiparmak[29] and Stojan Siljanovski[30]
 Sweden 10 Including Raoul Wallenberg, Per Anger, Ivan Danielsson,[31] Lars Berg,[32] Valdemar Langlet, Nina Langlet, Elow Kihlgren, Erik Perwe, Elisabeth Hesselblad and Erik Myrgren
 Slovenia 7 Including Zora Piculin [33]
 Spain 7 Ángel Sanz Briz, José Ruiz Santaella and his wife, Carmen (es), and Eduardo Propper de Callejón
 United States 5 Varian Fry, Martha and Waitstill Sharp, Lois Gunden,[34][35] and Master Sergeant Roddie Edmonds[36]
 Estonia 3 Uku and Eha Masing and Polina Lentsman
 Portugal 3 Aristides de Sousa Mendes, issued 30,000 visas to people escaping the Nazis In France. Carlos Sampaio Garrido sheltered about 1,000 Jews in safe-houses in Budapest and gave them Portuguese documents to leave the country.[citation needed]
 Brazil 2 Luis Martins de Souza Dantas and Aracy de Carvalho Guimarães Rosa
 Republic of China (1912–1949) 2 Pan Jun Shun and Feng-Shan Ho (provided more than 3,000 visas to Jews in need during his tenure as ambassador of ROC to Vienna in 1938)
 Indonesia 2 Tole Madna, Mima Saina[37]
 Chile 1 Maria Edwards McClure[38]
 Cuba 1 Ámparo (Otero) Pappo
 Ecuador 1 Manuel Antonio Muñoz Borrero
 Egypt 1 Mohammed Helmy[39]
 El Salvador 1 José Castellanos Contreras (provided Salvadoran citizenship papers to approximately 13,000 Central European Jews)
 Georgia 1 Sergei Metreveli
 Ireland 1 Mary Elmes[40] (saved at least 200 Jewish children under the age of 12 by smuggling them over the border between France and Spain in the boot of her car)
 Japan 1 Chiune Sugihara (provided approximately 3,400 transit visas to Jews in need)
 Luxembourg 1 Victor Bodson (former Justice Minister and Chairman of the Luxembourg House of Representatives; saved approximately 100 Jews)
 Montenegro 1 Petar Zankovic
 Peru 1 José Maria Barreto[41]
 Turkey 1 Selâhattin Ülkümen
 Vietnam 1 Paul Nguyễn Công Anh
Total 26,120 As of 1 January 2016


  • Those who Helped: Polish Rescuers of Jews During the Holocaust - Publisher: Main Commission for the Investigation of Crimes against the Polish Nation–The Institute of National Memory (1993) ISBN 83-903356-4-6
  • Fogelman, Eva. Conscience & Courage: Rescuers of Jews during the Holocaust. New York: Doubleday, 1994.
  • Bercher, Elinor J. Schindler's Legacy: True Stories of the List Survivors. New York: Penguin, 1994.
  • Michał Grynberg, Księga Sprawiedliwych (Book of the Righteous), Warsaw, PWN, 1993.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Saving Jews: Polish Righteous". Archived from the original on 17 July 2007. Retrieved 4 December 2015. 
  2. ^ Yad Vashem, Names of Righteous by Country Accessed 12 December 2016.
  3. ^ "Poland. Historical Background – The Righteous Among The Nations". Yad Vashem. Archived from the original on 2010-08-18. Retrieved 2013-09-06. 
  4. ^ "Karolina Juszczykowska". Stories of Women Who Rescued Jews During the Holocaust. Righteous Among the Nations - Yad Vashem. 
  5. ^ Graaff, Arthur (18 Jan 2012), "Nederlanders redde joden", De Volkskrant (in Dutch), NL 
  6. ^ "The Righteous Among The Nations". Jerusalem, Israel: Yad Vashem. 1990. Retrieved 14 December 2015. 
  7. ^ Hans Calmeyer - his activity to save Jews' lives during the Holocaust, at Yad Vashem website
  8. ^ "Caecilia Antonia Maria Loots - Stories of Women Who Rescued Jews During the Holocaust". Righteous Among the Nations - Yad Vashem. 
  9. ^ "Jacques Chirac Honors French World War II Saviors". European Jewish Congress. 11 April 2007. 
  10. ^ Hieromonk Daniil Tymchyna – his activity to save Jews' lives during the Holocaust, at Yad Vashem website
  11. ^ Stepan Omelianiuk – his activity to save Jews' lives during the Holocaust, at Yad Vashem website
  12. ^ "Former Catholic Teacher Honored for Saving 2000 Jewish Children from Nazis". Jewish Telegraphic Agency. 
  13. ^ Dan Mikhman (1998). Belgium and the Holocaust: Jews, Belgians, Germans. Berghahn Books. pp. 310–. ISBN 978-965-308-068-3. 
  14. ^ "Jeanne Daman-Scaglione - Stories of Women Who Rescued Jews During the Holocaust - Righteous Among the Nations - Yad Vashem". 
  15. ^ Karig Sára - her activity to save Jews' lives during the Holocaust, at Yad Vashem website
  16. ^ Israel Gutman, Bracha Rivlin e Liliana Picciotto, I giusti d'Italia: i non ebrei che salvarono gli ebrei, 1943-45 (Mondadori: Milano 2006), pp. 75-76.
  17. ^ "Yad Vashem The Holocaust Martyrs' and Heroes' Remembrance Authority". Yad Vashem. Retrieved 19 June 2013. 
  18. ^ "Catholic activist killed for saving Jews set for sainthood". The Times of Israel. 16 June 2013. Retrieved 19 June 2013. 
  19. ^ "Belarus. Historical Background - The Righteous Among The Nations". Yad Vashem. 2010-02-16. Archived from the original on 2010-08-18. Retrieved 2013-09-06. 
  20. ^ [1]
  21. ^ [2]
  22. ^ "Minutes of the Sub-Commission for the Recognition of the "Righteous Among the Nations"" (in German). Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs. 18 April 2005. Retrieved 10 June 2009. 
  23. ^ Tschuy, Theo. Dangerous Diplomacy: The Story of Carl Lutz, Rescuer of 62,000 Hungarian Jews, 2000. Grand Rapids:Eerdmans. ISBN 0-8028-3905-3
  24. ^ "Featured Stories - Bosnia - The Righteous Among The Nations". Yad Vashem. 2010-02-16. Archived from the original on 2013-12-03. Retrieved 2013-09-06. 
  25. ^ [3]
  26. ^ "Featured Stories - Armenia - The Righteous Among The Nations". Yad Vashem. 2010-02-16. Archived from the original on 2011-06-23. Retrieved 2013-09-06. 
  27. ^ [4]
  28. ^ Novick, Peter (1999). The Holocaust in American Life. Mariner Books. p. 180. ISBN 978-0618082322. 
  29. ^ Boris Altiparmak - his activity to save Jews' lives during the Holocaust, at Yad Vashem website
  30. ^ Stojan Siljanovski - his activity to save Jews' lives during the Holocaust, at Yad Vashem website
  31. ^ Ivan Danielsson - his activity to save Jews' lives during the Holocaust, at Yad Vashem website
  32. ^ Lars Berg - his activity to save Jews' lives during the Holocaust, at Yad Vashem website
  33. ^ "Slovenian Righteous at Yad Vashem" (PDF). Retrieved 2013-09-06. 
  34. ^ "American Lois Gunden named Righteous Gentile". Jewish Telegraphic Agency. Retrieved 4 December 2015. 
  35. ^ "Lois Gunden - Stories of Women Who Rescued Jews During the Holocaust - Righteous Among the Nations - Yad Vashem". Retrieved 4 December 2015. 
  36. ^ "American Named Righteous Among the Nations by Yad Vashem for Saving Fellow Jewish Soldiers". Retrieved 4 December 2015. 
  37. ^ [5]
  38. ^ "The Righteous Among the Nations Department". Yad Vashem. 2005. Retrieved 1 April 2013. 
  39. ^ "Dr. Mohamed Helmy and Frieda Szturmann". The Righteous Among The Nations - Yad Vashem. Retrieved 4 December 2015. 
  40. ^ "Cork woman receives first Irish honour for saving Jewish victims of the Holocaust". The Irish Times. May 15, 2013. Retrieved 21 August 2013. A Cork woman who risked her life to save Jewish children from Nazi gas chambers has become the first Irish person to be honoured as "Righteous Among the Nations" by Yad Vashem, Israel’s official memorial to Jewish victims of the Holocaust. Among those saved by Mary Elmes, who died in 2002, was Ronald Friend, now professor emeritus of psychology at Stony Brook, New York. At the time he was a two-year-old child whose father would not survive but whose five-year-old brother Michael was also rescued by Ms Elmes. 
  41. ^ "Yad Vashem recognizes first Peruvian righteous gentile". Jewish Telegraphic Agency. June 12, 2014. Retrieved 4 February 2017. 

External links[edit]