AN 88-YEAR-OLD former SS soldier has been charged with multiple counts of murder related to one of the most infamous World War II massacres.
German prosecutors brought the charges against the suspect, known only as Werner C, for his alleged role in the slaughter of almost the entire population of the French village of Oradour-sur-Glane on June 10, 1944.
The prosecutor's office in Dortmund said it was charging him over the murder of 25 people, committed by a group, and with aiding and abetting the killing of hundreds more.
The Oradour massacre killed 642 people, including 205 children, in reprisals for the supposed kidnapping of a German officer by the French resistance.
After the war, Charles de Gaulle ordered the village to remain untouched and uninhabited as a memorial to Nazi cruelty and its victims.
Andreas Brendel, a Dortmund state prosecutor, said the suspect -- 19 at the time -- denied the charges. He added that five more men could face court for their alleged role in the killings. (©Daily Telegraph, London)