Montenegro was recognised as an independent state at the Congress of Berlin in 1878. Between the world wars, it became a part of Yugoslavia. In April 1941, Germany’s twelve-day campaign against the south slavic state led to its partition between the Axis powers and their allies. As a result, most of Montenegro came, along with Kosovo, under Italian rule. King Victor Emmanuel III suggested restoring an independent Montenegro based on the country’s 1914 boundaries. Thus, the Kingdom of Montenegro (or the Independent State of Montenegro) existed between 1941 and 1943 as a protectorate of Fascist Italy. After Italy’s surrender in September 1943, German troops moved into Montenegro. When Germany retreated from Montenegro in December 1944, the partisans assumed control. Montenegro declared independence in June 2006, which has received diplomatic recognition from almost all United Nations member states, including Serbia.

According to the 1931 census, Montenegro had 360,044 inhabitants, very few of which were Jews. In April 1941, some 730 Jews were living in Montenegro. While Italian occupying authorities offered some protection from the Germans, more research needs to be done about the fate of the Montenegrin Jews after the Italian surrender and during the German occupation. In June 1944, 100 Jewish refugees were deported through Sajmište to Bergen-Belsen. The number of victims is still subject to further research.

Archival Situation

The State Archives of Montenegro (Državni arhiv Crne Gore), established in 1951, are the country's national archives and are located in the historic capital of Cetinje.

EHRI Research (Summary)

While a number of archives and institutions in Montenegro are likely to be relevant for Holocaust research, EHRI has yet to determine the exact nature and importance of their holdings. In the EHRI Portal, Montenegro is mainly covered by the Institut für Zeitgeschichte–Archiv, USHMM, and the Bundesarchiv in Freiburg.