International

Italian mother reunited with World War 2 baby after 71 years

ROME: A 92-year-old Italian has been reunited with her daughter after she was taken from her at birth 71 years ago, Italian media reported Monday.

The elderly woman, originally from Novellara, a small village in northern Italy, was working in Germany during World War II, when she became pregnant by a married German soldier.

After she gave birth, the father’s family took the baby — named as Margot Bachmann in the media reports — and raised it in Germany.

The girl had been told her birth mother was Italian, but that she had died during the war.

But when her father died last year, Bachmann, now 71, decided to look for her mother through the International Tracing Service (ITS), a German centre for WWII documentation.

With the help of the Italian Red Cross, the ITS discovered that Bachmann’s mother was still alive and the two were reunited at the weekend.

“When I began to look into the whereabouts of my mother to find out a little more, I never imagined that I would one day be able to hug her,” Bachmann told Il Quotidiano newspaper.

“My father had forbidden me from looking for her, but after his death and thanks to the wonderful help of my own daughter, I have found her.”

Italian Red Cross spokeswoman Laura Bastianetto, who has present at the reunion, described it as “a small miracle”.

“It is rare for a mother and daughter to find each other after 71 years, it’s far more common for brothers and sisters to be reunited as there are so few World War II survivors,” she said.

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