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Obama To Raise Wallenberg Issue In Russia

Mystery surrounds the fate of Swedish diplomat Raoul Wallenberg who is thought to have died in 1947.
U.S. President Barack Obama has vowed to raise the issue of Swedish Holocaust hero Raoul Wallenberg's fate during his visit to Russia.

Obama said during a visit to Sweden the day before his scheduled arrival in St. Petersburg on September 5 for a Group of 20 summit that he would inquire about Wallenberg in meetings with Russian officials.

Wallenberg was posted as a Swedish diplomat to Nazi-occupied Budapest in July 1944 and rescued tens of thousands of Jews by issuing them protective passports during the final months of the Holocaust.

Wallenberg was arrested by Soviet forces in Hungary in early 1945 and subsequently disappeared.

Obama alluded to Wallenberg when speaking on September 4 about a possible intervention in the Syrian conflict following a suspected chemical-weapons attack, saying Wallenberg was a reminder "of our power not simply to bear witness but to act."

Based on reporting by AP and AFP