World leaders will celebrate the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau at an event in Jerusalem next year.
The commemorative event, organised by the World Holocaust Forum Foundation, will be held at Yad Vashem on January 23 – 75 years after Soviet soldiers entered the camp and liberated over 7,000 prisoners.
According to estimates, over 1.1m people were murdered at this site, most of whom were Jewish.
Presidents Emmanuel Macron, of France, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, of Germany, Sergio Mattarella, of Italy, and Alexander Van der Bellen, of Austria, have confirmed their attendance.
Israeli President Reuven Rivlin said the conference would be held at a “very important historical moment” amid “the voices of Holocaust denial and antisemitism once again rising.”
“We will never support those who falsify the truth or those who try to ensure the Holocaust is forgotten,” he said. “Not individuals and not organisations; not leaders of political parties and not heads of states.”
World Holocaust Forum Foundation Dr Moshe Kantor said in a statement: “This event will provide a unique opportunity for world leaders to stand up and declare ‘enough’ to antisemitism, intolerance and racism and stop the hate.”
Yad Vashem Chairman Avner Shalev added: “The Holocaust, aimed at the total annihilation of all Jews everywhere, and the eradication of their civilization, was fueled by extreme racist antisemitism.
“It is the responsibility of all humanity, and especially the leaders that will gather here at Yad Vashem, to work to fight antisemitism, racism and xenophobia.”