Holocaust commemoration: Israel commemorates murdered Jews

Status: 04/28/2022 10:29 am

In Israel, ceremonies commemorating the victims of the Holocaust have continued. Sirens wailed across the country in the morning, many cars stood still. Bundestag President Bas laid a wreath at the Yad Vashem memorial.

Israel commemorated the six million Jews murdered in the Holocaust. Sirens wailed nationwide for two minutes in the morning. Cars stopped in the streets, people stood still and commemorated the dead. A commemoration event then began at the Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial in Jerusalem, which was also attended by the President of the Bundestag, Bärbel Bas. The politician laid a wreath on behalf of the Bundestag.

Bas is currently on a three-day visit to Israel. In the Knesset, she also lit a candle in memory of the Jewess Irma Nathan, who was deported from her hometown of Duisburg 80 years ago. She was murdered by the Nazis in 1942. Her husband and two children were also killed by the Nazis. The German National Socialists and their accomplices murdered a total of six million Jews during World War II.

“Unprecedented event in human history”

At the official opening ceremony at Yad Vashem on Wednesday evening, Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett emphasized the uniqueness of the Holocaust. He said the Holocaust was an “unprecedented event in the history of mankind” with which the most gruesome events of the day and the most difficult wars cannot be compared. Bennett was alluding to comparisons between the Ukraine war and the Holocaust.

During the one and a half hour ceremony, Holocaust survivors reported on their fate and then lit large torches. According to the authorities, there are still 161,400 Holocaust survivors in Israel. The average age is 85.5 years. More than 1,000 of those affected are even older than 100 years, it said.

100 Holocaust survivors immigrated from Ukraine

According to the Jewish Claims Conference, around 100 Holocaust survivors have immigrated to Israel from Ukraine since the beginning of the war. In addition, around 70 people affected were brought to Germany from Ukraine with the help of the organization. The Claims Conference, with its headquarters in New York, is committed to material compensation for those affected.

According to Israeli data, at the end of 2020, 15.2 million Jews lived worldwide, most of them – 6.9 million – in Israel. The second largest Jewish community with six million was in the USA. At that time, 118,000 Jews lived in Germany. As a result, there are still fewer Jews worldwide than before the Second World War. At that time it was 16.6 million, it said.

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