Historic audio recordings from the Nuremberg Trials of notorious Nazi war criminals look set to be made available to the public thanks to a unique Swiss system.
The International Court of Justice in The Hague has requested help from the College of Engineering and Architecture in Fribourg to digitalize hundreds of hours of crackly audio from the trials stored on 2,000 dusty old vinyl records.
“The records were more or less forgotten at The Hague until someone found them in a storage room some five years ago,” Ottar Johnsen, professor of signal processing at Fribourg’s College of Engineering and Architecture, told swissinfo.ch.
Twenty-two high-ranking Nazis were put on trial in Nuremberg, Germany, from October 1945 to October 1946, and found guilty of charges such as waging a war of aggression, war crimes and crimes against humanity.
Hermann Göring, Rudolf Hess and Joachim von Ribbentrop were among those in the dock. Martin Bormann, Hitler’s deputy, was tried in absentia.
The Nuremberg trials are seen as setting an important legal precedent, preparing the ground for subsequent international war crimes prosecutions and the International Criminal Court.
Although transcripts and short films of the trials already exist, it will be the first time digital recordings of the entire trial sessions will be available to the public via the internet.