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During the dark years of the Holocaust, many of the millions of labor and concentration camp victims were sustained in their struggle for survival by the hope that their tormentors would not escape retribution. This expectation was reinforced by the warnings issued by the statesmen of the anti-Axis coalition and the declarations of the United States, Great Britain, and the USSR. Shortly after the cessation of hostilities, war crimes trials were indeed initiated in all parts of liberated Europe. Many of the accused were indicted, among other things, for crimes committed against Jews. People's tribunals for the prosecution of war crimes and crimes against humanity were also estab lished in Romania, a country that extricated itself from the Axis Alliance on 23 August 1944. The Romanian people's tribunals were set up and operated under the provi sions of Law No. 312, issued by the Ministry ofJustice on 21 April 1945. One ofthese tribunals was established in Cluj (Kolozsvar) and entrusted primarily with the prosecution of those involved in the violation of the rights of people living in Northern Transylvania, the part of the province that was transferred to Hungary under the terms of the Second Vienna Award (August 1940) and which remained under Hungarian rule from early September 1940 until its liberation by Soviet-Romanian forces in the fall of 1944. The crimes committed against the citizens of Northern Transylvania both within and outside the province were the subject of two major trials.