Xhaferi: Holocaust must never to be forgotten

Xhaferi: Holocaust must never to be forgotten
- "The Holocaust is one of the darkest periods of human civilization because over six million men, women and children were killed only because they were Jews, including 7,144 Macedonian Jews", said Parliament Speaker Talat Xhaferi in his address at the observance of 75 years from the deportation of the Macedonian Jews in Bitola on Sunday. Xhaferi said the Holocaust will never be forgotten, never allowing alteration of historic facts in the sense of its denial.

"Macedonia and its citizens remember this tragic event every year, in order to pay respect to our fellow citizens, but also all Jews, victims of the Holocaust. We will never forget the Holocaust, we will not allow for antisemitism, hate speech, intolerance, xenophobia or any other phenomena that represent the violation of human rights. That is why the Parliament has adopted a Declaration commemorating these fellow citizens, but also acknowledging our commitment," stated Xhaferi.

He also referred to other activities supporting the Jewish community in Macedonia, such as the denationalization law that prompted the return of their property, as well as construction of the Holocaust Memorial Center for the Jews of Macedonia.

"The site of the Memorial Center in downtown Skopje, and the fact that it is surrounded by a church on one side and a mosque on the other symbolically confirms the tolerance and openness of all ethnic communities living in Macedonia. That is why we ask that the Holocaust is never forgotten and repeated. We promote dialogue, tolerance and understanding, for the settlement of global, regional and bilateral issues," said Xhaferi.

A March of Life took place in Bitola, including thousands of citizens and guests from Germany and Israel.

Israel's Deputy-Defense Minister Eli Ben-Dahan, who pays a visit to Bitola, said the event is an excellent and unique opportunity for people to gather and remind themselves that Jews had lived as a community in the city.

"The Bitola story is not entirely told because there are no survivors to tell the truth about the morning when the Jews were taken to the death camp. I would like to thank the people of Macedonia for marching with the Jews and taking care of the Jewish cemetery in Bitola," said Ben-Dahan.

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