In the Risiera di San Sabba on the outskirts of Trieste/Trst, the only crematorium in Italy operated from 1943 to 1945. The Nazis turned the former rice mill into a camp with prisons, dumps for looted goods and a cremation chamber. For many, the Risiera was just an intermediate stop on the way to German concentration camps. Mainly Slovenians and Croatians from Trieste and Istria, Italian anti-fascists and many Jewish families were imprisoned in it.
Through torture of the arrested the authorities wanted to get information on the resistance movement. In the case of useless information, people were sent to crematorium or on a train to a concentration camp. Out of 123 convoys, as many as 69 carried prisoners from Risiera to extermination camps and additional 30 convoys carried them to forced labour camps. Because in the last days of the war the Germans blew up the crematorium and the documents, it is impossible to get the exact number of prisoners and the dead. It is estimated that around 20,000 people were imprisoned here and 3,500-5,000 of them died.
The Risiera was declared national monument in 1965.