Giado Concentration Camp

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An internment camp for Libyan Jews.

During World War II, Giado was built by the Italian fascist authorities on the Tripolitanian plateau, about 150 miles (240 km) south of Tripoli. It was established after the second British occupation of Cyrenaica, which ended 27 January 1942. The Italians, who had colonized Libya, decided on a "cleaning out" (sfollamento) of all Jews from the province. Over 3,000 Jews were taken to internment and labor camps in Tripolitania between May and October. About 75 percent of these were sent to Giado. The camp was administered by Italian officers. The guards included both Italians and Arabs. Rations and sanitary conditions in Giado were very poor, and a typhus epidemic broke out in December 1942.

By the time the British liberated the camp during the North Africa campaign, in late January 1943, 526 of the inmates had died. Others had been shot trying to escape as the Axis forces retreated westward.


Stillman, Norman A. The Jews of Arab Lands in Modern Times. Philadelphia: Jewish Publication Society, 1991.

norman stillman