Lithuania's Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis pays tribute to the victims of the Holocaust at the Paneriai Memorial
On 8 April, on the occasion of the Holocaust Remembrance Day (Yom HaShoah ve HaGevurah), the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania Gabrielius Landsbergis paid tribute to the victims of the Holocaust at the Paneriai Memorial. The Foreign Minister noted that a big layer of the Lithuanian culture and identity had been destroyed during the Holocaust, but each lost life was of the greatest importance. Therefore, the memory must be cherished and passed on to future generations.
“It is a warning to all of us that the aggressive policy of violence, mutual hatred must be prevented today to ensure that such a tragedy will never happen again. To this end, we must constantly teach and educate our society, especially the younger generation. We should not be afraid to speak boldly and openly about our painful history,” said Landsbergis.
The Embassy of Israel in Lithuania organised the ceremony, which was attended by Viktorija Čmilytė-Nielsen, Speaker of the Seimas (Parliament), representatives from state institutions, the Ambassadors of Israel, the U.S.A., and Germany to Lithuania, Faina Kukliansky, Chair of the Lithuanian Jewish Community, and Holocaust survivors.
Established in 1953, the holiday aims to teach about the history of the Holocaust in order to combat all forms of anti-Semitism and to secure the promise of ‘Never Again’. Nazis and their local collaborators in Europe murdered six million Jews and five million people of other nationalities, including some 200, 000 Lithuanian Jews.
This year marks the 80th anniversary of the beginning of the Holocaust in Lithuania.