A former commander of a communist labor camp in Romania has been charged with genocide for his role in the deaths of 103 political prisoners, the Euro News website reports today (October 24, 2013).
Ion Ficior, 85, was commander at the Periprava labor camp from 1958 to 1963. The camp -- located in the remote Danube Delta village near the Black Sea -- held up to 2,000 prisoners.
Romania had about 500,000 political prisoners under the Communist regime, about one-fifth of whom died while in detention, historians assert.
Ficior's role was brought to light by a Romanian institute that investigates communist-era crimes, which said that prisoners in the Periprava camp died from malnutrition, beatings, lack of medicine, and from dysentery caused by drinking dirty water from the Danube River.