Major ghettos in occupied Europe
US Holocaust Memorial Museum
During World War II, the Germans established ghettos mainly in eastern Europe (between 1939 and 1942) and also in Hungary (in 1944). These ghettos were enclosed districts of a city in which the Germans forced the Jewish population to live under miserable conditions. The Germans regarded the establishment of Jewish ghettos as a provisional measure to control, isolate, and segregate Jews. Beginning in 1942, after the decision had been made to kill the Jews, the Germans systematically destroyed the ghettos, deporting the Jews to extermination camps where they were killed.
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