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Filmmaker Loridan-Ivens, Auschwitz companion of Simone Veil, dies aged 90

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Marceline Loridan-Yvens in January 2015 AFP/Dominique Faget

French writer and filmmaker Marceline Loridan-Ivens, a lifelong friend of Simone Veil after the pair met in the Auschwitz-Birkenau Nazi death camp, died Tuesday aged 90.


Jean Veil, who was also the Loridan-Ivens' family lawyer said "she was mother's deportation comrade."

Loridan-Ivens was taken to the Nazi camp when she was just 15.

"That terribly difficult episode of their lives made them unwavering friends" with a relationship which was "almost family", he added.

It was on 10 May, 1945, three days after Germany officially surrendered to the Allies, that Loridan-Ivens saw her first Russian soldier, approaching the camp on a scooter waving a red flag.

She then spent the rest of her life denouncing injustice and violence.

French government spokesman Benjamin Griveaux on Twitter described Loridan-Ivens as "a lesson in life, to ponder and perpetuate".

Women's rights icon and former health minister Simone Veil died last year aged 89.

Loridan-Ivens put her autobiographical reminisces on screen in her 2003 film Birch-Tree Meadow, the title a literal translation of "Birkenau".

Her second husband, Dutch documentary filmmaker Henri Anton 'Joris' Ivens, died in 1989.