A wall engraved with the names of 13,732 Jewish refugees who sought sanctuary in China during World War II was unveiled in Shanghai on Tuesday.
The 34-meter bronze wall stands at the Shanghai Jewish Refugee Museum at the former site of the Ohel Moshe Synagogue. It became open for the public to view just a day before the 69th anniversary marking the end of the anti-Japanese war, according to Xinhua.
References to Japan make some not-so-subtle appearances on the monument. Wall Street Journal’s James T. Areddy points out that two of 10 highlighted quotes on the wall from former residents are digs at Japan’s wartime rule.
People working on the project say the list substantially came from an August 1944 census of foreigners, which was compiled by occupying Japanese force, according to WSJ. It was then released as a supplement to a book co-written by Sonja Mühlberger, who was once a resident in Shanghai. Mühlberger says she got the list from an Austrian woman who grew up in the district.
Mühlberger searches for her name on the wall listing thousands of refugees
The Shanghai government estimates that over 18,000 Jews who escaped Nazi persecution fled to Shanghai, which didn’t require entry visas. The list puts the number at 23,000.