Leaders around the world marked International Holocaust Remembrance Day Wednesday, commemorating the liberation of the Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp 71 years ago.
In Canada, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau issued a statement in memory of the victims of the Holocaust:
“On this day, we pay tribute to the memory of the millions of victims murdered during the Holocaust. We honour those who survived atrocities at the hands of the Nazi regime, and welcome their courageous stories of hope and perseverance.
“The Holocaust is a stark reminder of the dangers and risks of allowing hate, prejudice, and discrimination to spread unchallenged. It also reminds us that silence must never be an option when humanity is threatened.
“As we pause to educate ourselves and our families on the bitter lessons of the Holocaust, we also strengthen our resolve to work with domestic and international partners to continue defending human rights and condemning intolerance.”
In the United States, President Barack Obama is scheduled to attend a ceremony at the Israeli Embassy in Washington, DC, which will honour four Righteous Among the Nations. In Israel, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said remembering the victims of the Holocaust is particularly important now, during a “period of resurgent and sometimes violent anti-Semitism.”
“It is commemorations like this that remind us all where the oldest and most enduring hatred can lead,” Netanyahu said, warning that “Jews are once again being targeted just for being Jews,” referring to the recent spate of violence that began in October.