January 3, 1942, remains written in black letters in the history of the Serbian people – on that date, Nazi authorities issued decrees that meant death and suffering for many Serbs.
On that day, Nazi Germany established 23 concentration camps in Norway which held more than 4,500 Yugoslavs, mostly Serbs.
The most notorious were Beisfjord, Botn, Erlandet, Falstad, Korgan, Osen, to where people mostly from the concentration camp in Staro Sajmište in Belgrade were sent.
Until April 1943, 4,680 people were deported, of whom more than 3,000 were killed.
Norwegian anti-Fascists helped camp inmates by leaving food and cigarettes hidden by the road which they used to go to forced labor and by organizing escapes to neutral Sweden for a small number who managed to escape from concentration camps.
After the war, 1,300 surviving internees founded an association with friends from Norway.
On January 3, 1942, Croatian Nazis – Ustashe, burned and looted the Serbian villages of Gornji Vrhovci, Kantarovci, Kruševo, Šušnjare, Cicvare, Grđavica, Bjelajce on Mount Papuk, and threw many Serbs alive in the fire.
This was one of the gravest crimes committed against Serbs in the Independent State of Croatia /NDH/.
The German commander for Serbia in WWII issued an order by which it was forbidden, under threat of death, to hide Jews and keep Jewish things, money, and securities.
Nonetheless, many Serbs risked their lives and saved many Jews from certain death.
As punishment, they were sent to concentration camps in Banjica, Sajmište or were transported to Nazi concentration camps all over Europe.