Research: The SNCB/NMBS and deportations during WWII. Call for testimonies and private archives.

At the request of the Belgian government, the Study and Documentation Centre for War and Society (CegeSoma, State Archives) is conducting an investigation into the role of the National Railway Company Belgium (SNCB) in the deportations of Jews, Roma and Sinti, political prisoners and forced labourers during the Second World War. The inquiry was commissioned by the President of the Senate, Stephanie D'Hose and the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Mobility, Georges Gilkinet.

The CegeSoma previously conducted research on the role of Belgian authorities in the deportation of Jews between 2004 and 2006. The current study focuses on the role of the SNCB and can be considered a follow-up to this earlier research, in which the role of the SNCB in particular is explored further. This research is limited to the historical questions and, therefore, will not include policy recommendations. In the scientific tradition of CegeSoma and the State Archives, this study will be conducted in full autonomy with an emphasis on the complex historical context. The research will be conducted by Florence Matteazzi and Nico Wouters, who will also be responsible for editing the final report. The research is conducted in close collaboration with the SNCB and is supervised by a scientific advisory committee. The inquiry started on August 1, 2022 and should result in a final report that will be presented to the Senate in November 2023.

To this end, we are making extensive use of archival sources that were not accessible before. In this context, we are also looking for any testimonies or private archives that contain concrete information about the role of the SNCB in the various deportations. If you have any information regarding the role of the SNCB in the deportations, please contact or