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Poland: Auschwitz marks Holocaust Remembrance Day with virtual memorial03:57

Poland: Auschwitz marks Holocaust Remembrance Day with virtual memorial

Poland, Oswiecim
January 27, 2021 at 20:40 GMT +00:00 · Published

Holocaust Remembrance Day was commemorated at the former Auschwitz concentration camp in Oswiecim on Wednesday with the event being held in a largely virtual format due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Wreaths were laid on the grounds of the former camp by Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum director Piotr Cywinski, with no other guests attending in order to ensure a COVID-19 safe event. Messages from Holocaust survivors, state ambassadors and leaders as well as religious figures were broadcast via video-link during an online event. Holocaust Remembrance Day coincides with the anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz by the Soviet Red Army during World War II.

In an address to the public, Anita Lasker-Wallfisch, a Holocaust survivor, reminded people to inform themselves of the history of the Holocaust, noting that victims were ordinary people "before being categorised into nationalities or religions."

In her speech, Lasker-Wallfisch appealed that through the denial of history and through hate at a time of the resurgence of anti-semitism and xenophobia, "we are murdering these victims a second time."

Lasker-Wallfisch, also shared a message which emphasised the need for unity among peoples. "We must fight against history repeating itself, honour the millions who were murdered here. Conquer our fear of what we don't know. Build bridges, talk to each other, celebrate your differences, because in reality, we have more in common than separates us."

The Auschwitz site symbolises the largest and most deadly mass extermination effort led by the Nazis on Polish soil. According to Yad Vashem, the Israeli-based Holocaust remembrance centre, more than 1,100,000 Jews, 70,000 Poles, 25,000 Sinti and Roma and a further 15,000 prisoners of war were killed at the camp.

Poland: Auschwitz marks Holocaust Remembrance Day with virtual memorial03:57
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Holocaust Remembrance Day was commemorated at the former Auschwitz concentration camp in Oswiecim on Wednesday with the event being held in a largely virtual format due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Wreaths were laid on the grounds of the former camp by Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum director Piotr Cywinski, with no other guests attending in order to ensure a COVID-19 safe event. Messages from Holocaust survivors, state ambassadors and leaders as well as religious figures were broadcast via video-link during an online event. Holocaust Remembrance Day coincides with the anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz by the Soviet Red Army during World War II.

In an address to the public, Anita Lasker-Wallfisch, a Holocaust survivor, reminded people to inform themselves of the history of the Holocaust, noting that victims were ordinary people "before being categorised into nationalities or religions."

In her speech, Lasker-Wallfisch appealed that through the denial of history and through hate at a time of the resurgence of anti-semitism and xenophobia, "we are murdering these victims a second time."

Lasker-Wallfisch, also shared a message which emphasised the need for unity among peoples. "We must fight against history repeating itself, honour the millions who were murdered here. Conquer our fear of what we don't know. Build bridges, talk to each other, celebrate your differences, because in reality, we have more in common than separates us."

The Auschwitz site symbolises the largest and most deadly mass extermination effort led by the Nazis on Polish soil. According to Yad Vashem, the Israeli-based Holocaust remembrance centre, more than 1,100,000 Jews, 70,000 Poles, 25,000 Sinti and Roma and a further 15,000 prisoners of war were killed at the camp.

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