Warsaw tributes Holocaust victims

2017-01-27 18:36 aktualizacja: 2018-09-27, 00:18
Warszawa, 27.01.2017. Obchody Międzynarodowego Dnia Pamięci o Ofiarach Holokaustu, 27 bm. przy pomniku Bohaterów Getta w Warszawie. W trakcie uroczystości zostały złożone wieńce, odbyła się modlitwa ekumeniczna oraz apel pamięci, podczas którego każdy mógł odczytać imiona ofiar Holokaustu, także swoich bliskich. Obchody zostały zorganizowane przez Fundację Shalom we współpracy z Teatrem Żydowskim, Stołeczną Estradą oraz Tramwajami Warszawskimi. (mr) Fot. PAP/Paweł Supernak
Warszawa, 27.01.2017. Obchody Międzynarodowego Dnia Pamięci o Ofiarach Holokaustu, 27 bm. przy pomniku Bohaterów Getta w Warszawie. W trakcie uroczystości zostały złożone wieńce, odbyła się modlitwa ekumeniczna oraz apel pamięci, podczas którego każdy mógł odczytać imiona ofiar Holokaustu, także swoich bliskich. Obchody zostały zorganizowane przez Fundację Shalom we współpracy z Teatrem Żydowskim, Stołeczną Estradą oraz Tramwajami Warszawskimi. (mr) Fot. PAP/Paweł Supernak
We must declare with determination that we shall stand guard of what to us is of most value: peace and an attitude of respect for others, PM Beata Szydlo wrote in a letter to participants in a Friday International Holocaust Remembrance Day ceremony in Warsaw.

The ceremony at Warsaw's Ghetto Heroes Memorial was attended by Israeli Vice-ambassador Ruth Cohen-Dar, parliamentarians, government and local government officials, diplomats, representatives of social and religious organisations, school youth and Warsaw inhabitants.

In her letter Szydlo observed that remembrance of the Holocaust and its victims served to prevent the recurrence of such events.

"As each year, on January 27, the anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz-Birkenau Nazi-German Concentration and Death Camp, we bow our heads before the victims of Nazi terror and genocide, and unite in joint remembrance and mature responsibility for such events never to occur again", Szydlo wrote.

Szydlo called the Holocaust "one of the most tragic pages in global history", and "an unimaginable ordeal for the Jewish nation". She also reminded that Warsaw houses a Museum of the History of Polish Jews and that thousands of Poles helped save Jews from the Holocaust.

"Today we turn our memory to the unimaginable ordeal of the Jewish nation and tribute those who perished. We search for words with which we can express the pain of human suffering during the war. Here, on Polish soil, on the ruins of the ghetto, where years later a museum was erected which constitutes a metaphor of the fate of Jews in Poland, we also recall the conduct of Poles in the face of the Holocaust. We remember about the thousands of our countrymen, those Righteous Among the Nations, who risked their lives to save Jews", the PM wrote, reminding that International Holocaust Remembrance Day carried "a moral obligation to do everything to prevent the recurrence of war".

Cohen-Dar reminded that six million Jews, including 1.5 million children, perished during World War Two. She added that it was a duty to preserve the memory of the victims, also for future generations.

"We lost six million of our brothers and sisters, including one-and-a-half million children. We can only imagine what Poland and Warsaw would be like if they were all with us today", Cohen-Dar said, stressing that the battle with racism, anti-Semitism and all signs of xenophobia should be an "inalienable part of our life philosophy".

In a letter to the participants UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned against attributing the Holocaust only to "the madness of a group of Nazi criminals", and reminded that it was "a culmination of centuries of hatred, accusations and discrimination" towards Jews.

International Holocaust Remembrance Day was instituted in 2005 by the UN General Assembly. The annual date of the observances coincides with the anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp - the main Holocaust site - by the Red Army. (PAP)


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