Croatian President Ivo Josipović: All must examine their conscience on Holocaust Remembrance Day

by 1389 on January 28, 2014

in 1389 (blog admin), Croatia, Holocaust, Jasenovac has the story:

Croatian President Ivo Josipović

Holocaust Remembrance Day is a day when we must all examine our conscience, when the entire humanity must examine its conscience, Croatian President Ivo Josipovic said on Monday.

Speaking after a Holocaust Remembrance Day commemoration in parliament, he said millions of innocent victims, first and foremost Jews, but other peoples as well, were killed during the Holocaust.

“On Holocaust Remembrance Day we must think about war, the Holocaust and genocide never happening again. Unfortunately, we are witnessing that there are wars around the world even today, that even today there are people who advocate hatred towards others and who are willing to commit the most horrific acts,” the president said.

He said Croatians too must re-examine their past and condemn what happened during World War Two, notably in the Jasenovac concentration camp, “a symbol of the Holocaust, a symbol of the suffering of Jews, Serbs, Roma and everyone else, including Croats.”

Also today, Josipovic, Parliament Speaker Josip Leko and Prime Minister Zoran Milanovic laid flowers and paid their respects to all the victims at artist Zlatko Kopljar’s K19 installation in Zagreb’s Fascism Victims Square.

Author Slavko Goldstein recalled that on 27 January 1945 the first units of the Red Army liberated the inmates of the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp and that the World Jewish Congress decided to observe Holocaust Remembrance Day on that date. He said the highest number of Jews, probably 1.5 million of the six million killed, were killed there.

The day is being observed in a dignified manner for the first time in front of the K19 monument, made of bricks from a Jasenovac camp wall, four metres high and two metres thick so that the inmates could not escape. The wall was built by them and many died in the process, because who was unable to work was killed on the spot. Those bricks are a proper and dignified monument to that and I’m glad the state leadership observed this day by paying their respects to all the victims, said Goldstein.

He said about 85,000 people were listed as having been killed in Jasenovac but that the number was probably close to 100,000 because 10-20 per cent were not listed. K19 is a monument to them in Zagreb, he added.

Zagreb Jewish Community rabbi Mose Prelevic said a brief prayer for the Holocaust victims.

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