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Poland - Auschwitz Survivors Mark Liberation Anniversary (photos)

Published on: January 27, 2014 08:43 AM
Last updated on: January 27, 2014 01:20 PM
By: AP
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Holocaust survivors arrive for a ceremony to mark the 69th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz concentration camp in Poland and to remember its victims. (Kacper Pempel/Reuters)Holocaust survivors arrive for a ceremony to mark the 69th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz concentration camp in Poland and to remember its victims. (Kacper Pempel/Reuters)

Poland -A European Jewish leader condemned anti-Semitism as a crime on Monday as Auschwitz survivors and Israeli officials marked 69 years since the liberation of the Nazi death camp.

The ceremony at the Auschwitz-Birkenau memorial took place on International Holocaust Remembrance Day, established by the United Nations in memory of some 6 million Holocaust victims, and some 1.5 million victims of Auschwitz, who were mostly Jews.

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Some 20 survivors walked through the gate that bares the infamous “Arbeit Macht Frei” (Work Makes You Free) sign and laid a wreath at the former camp’s Executions Wall, where the inmates, mainly Polish resistance members, were shot to death.

Around 60 members of the Knesset, or half of the Israeli legislature, joined the survivors for the observances that included visits to the red brick Auschwitz barracks which house a collection of the victims’ belongings and hair, and a list of the names of some 4.2 million Jews who perished in the Holocaust.

In a special ceremony in Birkenau, also called Auschwitz II, they also heard from one of the survivors, Noah Klieger, about the Death March when some 15,000 died after Nazis fleeing the advancing Soviet army in January 1945 forced inmates still able to walk to march west in freezing weather. They remembered Jan. 27, 1945, when the Red Army entered the camp and freed the remaining inmates, mostly children and sick people.

Israeli coalition leader, Yariv Levin, speaking on behalf of Knesset lawmakers, said that people in Israel should rely on themselves and aim to build a safe world.

“Walking here, on this soil soaked with blood of our brothers and sisters, we must assure our children and future generations that a different world, full of hope and free of fear can be built.”

Speaking at the European parliament ceremony in Brussels, European Jewish Congress President, Moshe Kantor, rejected free speech arguments over what he called the worldwide spread of anti-Semitism. Anti-Semitism is “not an opinion — it’s a crime,” he said.

Kantor pointed to the “quenelle,” a gesture invented by the French comedian Dieudonne that some have called an inverted Nazi salute. The comic, who has been convicted more than half a dozen times for inciting racial hatred or anti-Semitism, says it is merely an anti-establishment symbol. The gesture made headlines when soccer star Nicolas Anelka used it to celebrate a goal.

“Today we are witnessing the absolute democratization of anti-Semitism,” Kantor said. It is “a symbol invented by a so-called comedian that allows young people out for a drink, soldiers having a laugh and even a footballer scoring a goal, to have their own unique opportunity for Jew hatred.”

In Italy, meanwhile, President Giorgio Napolitano condemned as a “miserable provocation” threats against Rome’s Jewish community in recent days, including the delivery of packages containing pig heads to Rome’s main synagogue.

Napolitano said Monday during Holocaust Memorial Day commemorations that recent insults made against the Jewish community are “comparable only to the repugnant material in those packages.”

Italian police also detained two men, ages 33 and 47, on suspicion of instigating racial hatred for anti-Semitic graffiti, including denial of the Holocaust, near the main judicial offices in Rome. Authorities say the men belong to different far-right groups. No arrests have been announced for the delivery of the pig head’s.

Also Monday, the Holocaust Survivors’ Foundation USA called on Germany’s Allianz to pay aging survivors benefits that their families bought before they died in the Holocaust.

“It is shameful that today, Holocaust survivors are not allowed to even bring a lawsuit in a U.S. court to recover these unpaid policies,” they said. Legislation that would allow survivors in the U.S. to sue European insurance companies has lingered in Congress for years.

epaselect epa04044562 Simcha Rotem, 90, born as Simcha (Szymon) Rathajzer, also known as Kazik, former Jewish underground fighter who served as the head courier of the Jewish Fighting Organization (ZOB) which planned and executed the Warsaw ghetto uprising against the Nazis in April - May 1943, looks at a photograph of the entrance to the Birkenau camp during his visit, for the first time ever, at the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial museum in Jerusalem, Israel, 27 January 2014. International Holocaust Remembrance Day is annually marked on 27 January, the day in 1945 when the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp was liberated by Soviet forces.  EPA/ABIR SULTAN (Credit: EPA)epaselect epa04044562 Simcha Rotem, 90, born as Simcha (Szymon) Rathajzer, also known as Kazik, former Jewish underground fighter who served as the head courier of the Jewish Fighting Organization (ZOB) which planned and executed the Warsaw ghetto uprising against the Nazis in April - May 1943, looks at a photograph of the entrance to the Birkenau camp during his visit, for the first time ever, at the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial museum in Jerusalem, Israel, 27 January 2014. International Holocaust Remembrance Day is annually marked on 27 January, the day in 1945 when the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp was liberated by Soviet forces.  EPA/ABIR SULTAN (Credit: EPA)
Former Auschwitz prisoners carry candles as they approach the International Monument to the Victims of Fascism during a ceremony marking 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz in the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz II-Birkenau, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)Former Auschwitz prisoners carry candles as they approach the International Monument to the Victims of Fascism during a ceremony marking 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz in the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz II-Birkenau, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)
Isaac Herzog (L), the Israeli Knesset leader of the oppositional Labor party lit candles at the International Monument to the Victims of Fascism during a ceremony marking 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz in the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz II-Birkenau, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. Others are not identified.The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)Isaac Herzog (L), the Israeli Knesset leader of the oppositional Labor party lit candles at the International Monument to the Victims of Fascism during a ceremony marking 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz in the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz II-Birkenau, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. Others are not identified.The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)
Former Auschwitz prisoners lit candles at the International Monument to the Victims of Fascism during a ceremony marking 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz in the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz II-Birkenau, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)Former Auschwitz prisoners lit candles at the International Monument to the Victims of Fascism during a ceremony marking 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz in the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz II-Birkenau, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)
Visitors walk behind the gate with the lettering 'Work sets (you) free' at the memorial site of the concentration camp Sachsenhausen in Oranienburg, Germany, 27 January 2014. The victims of national socialism were remembered with the laying of wreaths in Sachenhausen on the occasion of the Day of Remembrance of the victims for national socialism. (Credit: EPA)Visitors walk behind the gate with the lettering ‘Work sets (you) free’ at the memorial site of the concentration camp Sachsenhausen in Oranienburg, Germany, 27 January 2014. The victims of national socialism were remembered with the laying of wreaths in Sachenhausen on the occasion of the Day of Remembrance of the victims for national socialism. (Credit: EPA)
Wreaths are placed at 'Station Z' at the memorial site of the concentration camp Sachsenhausen in Oranienburg, Germany, 27 January 2014. The victims of national socialism were remembered with the laying of wreaths in Sachenhausen on the occasion of the Day of Remembrance of the victims for national socialism. (Credit: EPA)Wreaths are placed at ‘Station Z’ at the memorial site of the concentration camp Sachsenhausen in Oranienburg, Germany, 27 January 2014. The victims of national socialism were remembered with the laying of wreaths in Sachenhausen on the occasion of the Day of Remembrance of the victims for national socialism. (Credit: EPA)
A Holocaust survivor walks inside the former concentration camp before a ceremony to mark the 69th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz Nazi death camp's  in Oswiecim, Poland, on Monday, Jan. 27, 2014, since the Soviet Red Army liberated the camp. Israeli lawmakers and government officials are to attend anniversary observances later in the day. The Nazis killed some 1.5 million people, mostly Jews at the camp during World War II. (Credit: AP)A Holocaust survivor walks inside the former concentration camp before a ceremony to mark the 69th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz Nazi death camp’s in Oswiecim, Poland, on Monday, Jan. 27, 2014, since the Soviet Red Army liberated the camp. Israeli lawmakers and government officials are to attend anniversary observances later in the day. The Nazis killed some 1.5 million people, mostly Jews at the camp during World War II. (Credit: AP)
Holocaust survivors arrive for a ceremony to mark the 69th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz Nazi death camp's  in Oswiecim, Poland, on Monday, Jan. 27, 2014, since the Soviet Red Army liberated the camp. Israeli lawmakers and government officials are to attend anniversary observances later in the day. The Nazis killed some 1.5 million people, mostly Jews at the camp during World War II. (Credit: AP)Holocaust survivors arrive for a ceremony to mark the 69th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz Nazi death camp’s in Oswiecim, Poland, on Monday, Jan. 27, 2014, since the Soviet Red Army liberated the camp. Israeli lawmakers and government officials are to attend anniversary observances later in the day. The Nazis killed some 1.5 million people, mostly Jews at the camp during World War II. (Credit: AP)
Auschwitz survivors lay a wreath and flowers at the former Nazi death camp's Executions wall in Oswiecim, Poland, on Monday, Jan. 27, 2014, to mark 69 years since the Soviet Red Army liberated the camp. Israeli lawmakers and government officials are to attend anniversary observances later in the day. The Nazis killed some 1.5 million people, mostly Jews at the camp during World War II.(AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski) (Credit: AP)Auschwitz survivors lay a wreath and flowers at the former Nazi death camp’s Executions wall in Oswiecim, Poland, on Monday, Jan. 27, 2014, to mark 69 years since the Soviet Red Army liberated the camp. Israeli lawmakers and government officials are to attend anniversary observances later in the day. The Nazis killed some 1.5 million people, mostly Jews at the camp during World War II.(AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski) (Credit: AP)
Holocaust survivors arrive for a ceremony to mark the 69th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz Nazi death camp's  in Oswiecim, Poland, on Monday, Jan. 27, 2014, since the Soviet Red Army liberated the camp. Israeli lawmakers and government officials are to attend anniversary observances later in the day. The Nazis killed some 1.5 million people, mostly Jews at the camp during World War II. (Credit: AP)Holocaust survivors arrive for a ceremony to mark the 69th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz Nazi death camp’s in Oswiecim, Poland, on Monday, Jan. 27, 2014, since the Soviet Red Army liberated the camp. Israeli lawmakers and government officials are to attend anniversary observances later in the day. The Nazis killed some 1.5 million people, mostly Jews at the camp during World War II. (Credit: AP)
Auschwitz survivors lay a wreath at the former Nazi death camp's Executions wall in Oswiecim, Poland, on Monday, Jan. 27, 2014, to mark 69 years since the Soviet Red Army liberated the camp. Israeli lawmakers and government officials are to attend anniversary observances later in the day. The Nazis killed some 1.5 million people, mostly Jews at the camp during World War II. (Credit: AP)Auschwitz survivors lay a wreath at the former Nazi death camp’s Executions wall in Oswiecim, Poland, on Monday, Jan. 27, 2014, to mark 69 years since the Soviet Red Army liberated the camp. Israeli lawmakers and government officials are to attend anniversary observances later in the day. The Nazis killed some 1.5 million people, mostly Jews at the camp during World War II. (Credit: AP)
Auschwitz survivors lay a wreath at the former Nazi death camp's Wall of Death in Oswiecim, Poland, on Monday, Jan. 27, 2014, to mark 69 years since the Soviet Red Army liberated the camp. Israeli lawmakers and government officials are to attend anniversary observances later in the day. The Nazis killed some 1.5 million people, mostly Jews at the camp during World War II. (Credit: AP)Auschwitz survivors lay a wreath at the former Nazi death camp’s Wall of Death in Oswiecim, Poland, on Monday, Jan. 27, 2014, to mark 69 years since the Soviet Red Army liberated the camp. Israeli lawmakers and government officials are to attend anniversary observances later in the day. The Nazis killed some 1.5 million people, mostly Jews at the camp during World War II. (Credit: AP)
Holocaust survivors arrive for a ceremony to mark the 69th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz Nazi death camp's  in Oswiecim, Poland, on Monday, Jan. 27, 2014, since the Soviet Red Army liberated the camp. Israeli lawmakers and government officials are to attend anniversary observances later in the day. The Nazis killed some 1.5 million people, mostly Jews at the camp during World War II. (Credit: AP)Holocaust survivors arrive for a ceremony to mark the 69th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz Nazi death camp’s in Oswiecim, Poland, on Monday, Jan. 27, 2014, since the Soviet Red Army liberated the camp. Israeli lawmakers and government officials are to attend anniversary observances later in the day. The Nazis killed some 1.5 million people, mostly Jews at the camp during World War II. (Credit: AP)
Holocaust survivors arrive for a ceremony to mark the 69th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz Nazi death camp's  in Oswiecim, Poland, on Monday, Jan. 27, 2014, since the Soviet Red Army liberated the camp. Israeli lawmakers and government officials are to attend anniversary observances later in the day. The Nazis killed some 1.5 million people, mostly Jews at the camp during World War II. (Credit: AP)Holocaust survivors arrive for a ceremony to mark the 69th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz Nazi death camp’s in Oswiecim, Poland, on Monday, Jan. 27, 2014, since the Soviet Red Army liberated the camp. Israeli lawmakers and government officials are to attend anniversary observances later in the day. The Nazis killed some 1.5 million people, mostly Jews at the camp during World War II. (Credit: AP)
Simcha Rotem, 90, born as Simcha (Szymon) Rathajzer, also known as Kazik (R), former Jewish underground fighter who served as the head courier of the Jewish Fighting Organization (ZOB) which planned and executed the Warsaw ghetto uprising against the Nazis in April - May 1943, visits for the first time ever the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial museum in Jerusalem, Israel, 27 January 2014. International Holocaust Remembrance Day is annually marked on 27 January, the day in 1945 when the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp was liberated by Soviet forces. (Credit: EPA)Simcha Rotem, 90, born as Simcha (Szymon) Rathajzer, also known as Kazik (R), former Jewish underground fighter who served as the head courier of the Jewish Fighting Organization (ZOB) which planned and executed the Warsaw ghetto uprising against the Nazis in April - May 1943, visits for the first time ever the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial museum in Jerusalem, Israel, 27 January 2014. International Holocaust Remembrance Day is annually marked on 27 January, the day in 1945 when the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp was liberated by Soviet forces. (Credit: EPA)
Simcha Rotem, 90, born as Simcha (Szymon) Rathajzer, also known as Kazik, former Jewish underground fighter who served as the head courier of the Jewish Fighting Organization (ZOB) which planned and executed the Warsaw ghetto uprising against the Nazis in April - May 1943, visits for the first time ever the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial museum in Jerusalem, Israel, 27 January 2014. International Holocaust Remembrance Day is annually marked on 27 January, the day in 1945 when the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp was liberated by Soviet forces. (Credit: EPA)Simcha Rotem, 90, born as Simcha (Szymon) Rathajzer, also known as Kazik, former Jewish underground fighter who served as the head courier of the Jewish Fighting Organization (ZOB) which planned and executed the Warsaw ghetto uprising against the Nazis in April - May 1943, visits for the first time ever the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial museum in Jerusalem, Israel, 27 January 2014. International Holocaust Remembrance Day is annually marked on 27 January, the day in 1945 when the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp was liberated by Soviet forces. (Credit: EPA)
Simcha Rotem, 90, born as Simcha (Szymon) Rathajzer, also known as Kazik, former Jewish underground fighter who served as the head courier of the Jewish Fighting Organization (ZOB) which planned and executed the Warsaw ghetto uprising against the Nazis in April - May 1943, visits for the first time ever the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial museum in Jerusalem, Israel, 27 January 2014. International Holocaust Remembrance Day is annually marked on 27 January, the day in 1945 when the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp was liberated by Soviet forces. (Credit: EPA)Simcha Rotem, 90, born as Simcha (Szymon) Rathajzer, also known as Kazik, former Jewish underground fighter who served as the head courier of the Jewish Fighting Organization (ZOB) which planned and executed the Warsaw ghetto uprising against the Nazis in April - May 1943, visits for the first time ever the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial museum in Jerusalem, Israel, 27 January 2014. International Holocaust Remembrance Day is annually marked on 27 January, the day in 1945 when the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp was liberated by Soviet forces. (Credit: EPA)
Simcha Rotem, 90, born as Simcha (Szymon) Rathajzer, also known as Kazik, former Jewish underground fighter who served as the head courier of the Jewish Fighting Organization (ZOB) which planned and executed the Warsaw ghetto uprising against the Nazis in April - May 1943, looks at a re-created Jewish house during the war during his visit, for the first time ever, at the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial museum in Jerusalem, Israel, 27 January 2014. International Holocaust Remembrance Day is annually marked on 27 January, the day in 1945 when the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp was liberated by Soviet forces. (Credit: EPA)Simcha Rotem, 90, born as Simcha (Szymon) Rathajzer, also known as Kazik, former Jewish underground fighter who served as the head courier of the Jewish Fighting Organization (ZOB) which planned and executed the Warsaw ghetto uprising against the Nazis in April - May 1943, looks at a re-created Jewish house during the war during his visit, for the first time ever, at the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial museum in Jerusalem, Israel, 27 January 2014. International Holocaust Remembrance Day is annually marked on 27 January, the day in 1945 when the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp was liberated by Soviet forces. (Credit: EPA)
Simcha Rotem, 90, born as Simcha (Szymon) Rathajzer, also known as Kazik, former Jewish underground fighter who served as the head courier of the Jewish Fighting Organization (ZOB) which planned and executed the Warsaw ghetto uprising against the Nazis in April - May 1943, visits for the first time ever the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial museum in Jerusalem, Israel, 27 January 2014. International Holocaust Remembrance Day is annually marked on 27 January, the day in 1945 when the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp was liberated by Soviet forces. (Credit: EPA)Simcha Rotem, 90, born as Simcha (Szymon) Rathajzer, also known as Kazik, former Jewish underground fighter who served as the head courier of the Jewish Fighting Organization (ZOB) which planned and executed the Warsaw ghetto uprising against the Nazis in April - May 1943, visits for the first time ever the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial museum in Jerusalem, Israel, 27 January 2014. International Holocaust Remembrance Day is annually marked on 27 January, the day in 1945 when the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp was liberated by Soviet forces. (Credit: EPA)
Simcha Rotem, 90, born as Simcha (Szymon) Rathajzer, also known as Kazik, former Jewish underground fighter who served as the head courier of the Jewish Fighting Organization (ZOB) which planned and executed the Warsaw ghetto uprising against the Nazis in April - May 1943, attends an exhibitiin on the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising during his visit, for the first time ever, at the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial museum in Jerusalem, Israel, 27 January 2014. International Holocaust Remembrance Day is annually marked on 27 January, the day in 1945 when the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp was liberated by Soviet forces. (Credit: EPA)Simcha Rotem, 90, born as Simcha (Szymon) Rathajzer, also known as Kazik, former Jewish underground fighter who served as the head courier of the Jewish Fighting Organization (ZOB) which planned and executed the Warsaw ghetto uprising against the Nazis in April - May 1943, attends an exhibitiin on the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising during his visit, for the first time ever, at the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial museum in Jerusalem, Israel, 27 January 2014. International Holocaust Remembrance Day is annually marked on 27 January, the day in 1945 when the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp was liberated by Soviet forces. (Credit: EPA)
Simcha Rotem, 90, born as Simcha (Szymon) Rathajzer, also known as Kazik, former Jewish underground fighter who served as the head courier of the Jewish Fighting Organization (ZOB) which planned and executed the Warsaw ghetto uprising against the Nazis in April - May 1943, attends an exhibitiin on the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising during his visit, for the first time ever, at the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial museum in Jerusalem, Israel, 27 January 2014. International Holocaust Remembrance Day is annually marked on 27 January, the day in 1945 when the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp was liberated by Soviet forces. (Credit: EPA)Simcha Rotem, 90, born as Simcha (Szymon) Rathajzer, also known as Kazik, former Jewish underground fighter who served as the head courier of the Jewish Fighting Organization (ZOB) which planned and executed the Warsaw ghetto uprising against the Nazis in April - May 1943, attends an exhibitiin on the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising during his visit, for the first time ever, at the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial museum in Jerusalem, Israel, 27 January 2014. International Holocaust Remembrance Day is annually marked on 27 January, the day in 1945 when the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp was liberated by Soviet forces. (Credit: EPA)
Simcha Rotem, 90, born as Simcha (Szymon) Rathajzer, also known as Kazik, former Jewish underground fighter who served as the head courier of the Jewish Fighting Organization (ZOB) which planned and executed the Warsaw ghetto uprising against the Nazis in April - May 1943, visits for the first time ever the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial museum in Jerusalem, Israel, 27 January 2014. International Holocaust Remembrance Day is annually marked on 27 January, the day in 1945 when the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp was liberated by Soviet forces. (Credit: EPA)Simcha Rotem, 90, born as Simcha (Szymon) Rathajzer, also known as Kazik, former Jewish underground fighter who served as the head courier of the Jewish Fighting Organization (ZOB) which planned and executed the Warsaw ghetto uprising against the Nazis in April - May 1943, visits for the first time ever the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial museum in Jerusalem, Israel, 27 January 2014. International Holocaust Remembrance Day is annually marked on 27 January, the day in 1945 when the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp was liberated by Soviet forces. (Credit: EPA)
Simcha Rotem, 90, born as Simcha (Szymon) Rathajzer, also known as Kazik, former Jewish underground fighter who served as the head courier of the Jewish Fighting Organization (ZOB) which planned and executed the Warsaw ghetto uprising against the Nazis in April - May 1943, looks at a recreated Jewish house during the war during his visit, for the first time ever, at the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial museum in Jerusalem, Israel, 27 January 2014. International Holocaust Remembrance Day is annually marked on 27 January, the day in 1945 when the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp was liberated by Soviet forces. (Credit: EPA)Simcha Rotem, 90, born as Simcha (Szymon) Rathajzer, also known as Kazik, former Jewish underground fighter who served as the head courier of the Jewish Fighting Organization (ZOB) which planned and executed the Warsaw ghetto uprising against the Nazis in April - May 1943, looks at a recreated Jewish house during the war during his visit, for the first time ever, at the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial museum in Jerusalem, Israel, 27 January 2014. International Holocaust Remembrance Day is annually marked on 27 January, the day in 1945 when the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp was liberated by Soviet forces. (Credit: EPA)
Simcha Rotem, 90, born as Simcha (Szymon) Rathajzer, also known as Kazik, former Jewish underground fighter who served as the head courier of the Jewish Fighting Organization (ZOB) which planned and executed the Warsaw ghetto uprising against the Nazis in April - May 1943, looks at a photograph of the entrance to the Birkenau camp during his visit, for the first time ever, at the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial museum in Jerusalem, Israel, 27 January 2014. International Holocaust Remembrance Day is annually marked on 27 January, the day in 1945 when the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp was liberated by Soviet forces. (Credit: EPA)Simcha Rotem, 90, born as Simcha (Szymon) Rathajzer, also known as Kazik, former Jewish underground fighter who served as the head courier of the Jewish Fighting Organization (ZOB) which planned and executed the Warsaw ghetto uprising against the Nazis in April - May 1943, looks at a photograph of the entrance to the Birkenau camp during his visit, for the first time ever, at the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial museum in Jerusalem, Israel, 27 January 2014. International Holocaust Remembrance Day is annually marked on 27 January, the day in 1945 when the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp was liberated by Soviet forces. (Credit: EPA)
95-year old Russian author Daniil Granin speaks on the occasion of the Day of Remembrance for the victims of national socialism at the German 'Bundestag' parliament at the Reichstag building in Berlin, Germany, 27 January 2014. Since 1996 Germany commemorates the victims of national socialism on 27 January, which marks the liberation of the biggest Nazi-death camp Auschwitz by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)95-year old Russian author Daniil Granin speaks on the occasion of the Day of Remembrance for the victims of national socialism at the German ‘Bundestag’ parliament at the Reichstag building in Berlin, Germany, 27 January 2014. Since 1996 Germany commemorates the victims of national socialism on 27 January, which marks the liberation of the biggest Nazi-death camp Auschwitz by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)
(L-R) 95-year old Russian author Daniil Granin, German President Joachim Gauck and German Chancellor Angela Merkel attend an event on the occasion of the Day of Remembrance for the victims of national socialism in the German 'Bundestag' parliament at the Reichstag building in Berlin, Germany, 27 January 2014. Since 1996 Germany commemorates the victims of national socialism on 27 January, which marks the liberation of the biggest Nazi-death camp Auschwitz by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)(L-R) 95-year old Russian author Daniil Granin, German President Joachim Gauck and German Chancellor Angela Merkel attend an event on the occasion of the Day of Remembrance for the victims of national socialism in the German ‘Bundestag’ parliament at the Reichstag building in Berlin, Germany, 27 January 2014. Since 1996 Germany commemorates the victims of national socialism on 27 January, which marks the liberation of the biggest Nazi-death camp Auschwitz by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)
Greek-Jewish survivors of the Holocaust in WWII attend a memorial service in Athens, Greece, 27 January 2014. Roughly 86 per cent of Greece's Jews or 65,000 people, lost their lives in concentration camps during the course of the war. (Credit: EPA)Greek-Jewish survivors of the Holocaust in WWII attend a memorial service in Athens, Greece, 27 January 2014. Roughly 86 per cent of Greece’s Jews or 65,000 people, lost their lives in concentration camps during the course of the war. (Credit: EPA)
Greek-Jewish Holocaust survivor Isaac Mizan (C) pays his respects during a memorial service at the Holocaust monument in Athens, Greece, 27 January 2014. Roughly 86 per cent of Greece's Jews or 65,000 people, lost their lives in concentration camps during the course of the war. (Credit: EPA)Greek-Jewish Holocaust survivor Isaac Mizan (C) pays his respects during a memorial service at the Holocaust monument in Athens, Greece, 27 January 2014. Roughly 86 per cent of Greece’s Jews or 65,000 people, lost their lives in concentration camps during the course of the war. (Credit: EPA)
 Isaac Herzog, the Israeli Knesset leader of the oppositional Labor party, speaks during a ceremony marking 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz in the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA) Isaac Herzog, the Israeli Knesset leader of the oppositional Labor party, speaks during a ceremony marking 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz in the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)
Director of the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum Piotr Cywinski speaks during a ceremony marking 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz in the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)Director of the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum Piotr Cywinski speaks during a ceremony marking 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz in the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)
Wreath and flowers lie at the concentration camp memorial in Ludwigslust, Germany, 27 January 2014. Since 1996 Germany commemorates the victims of national socialism on 27 January, which marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)Wreath and flowers lie at the concentration camp memorial in Ludwigslust, Germany, 27 January 2014. Since 1996 Germany commemorates the victims of national socialism on 27 January, which marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)
A man stands in front of flowers and wreaths at the Memorial for the victims of the concentration camp in Schwarzheide, Germany, 27 January 2014. Memorial events are held nationwide to commemorate the victims of national socialism on the International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January, which marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)A man stands in front of flowers and wreaths at the Memorial for the victims of the concentration camp in Schwarzheide, Germany, 27 January 2014. Memorial events are held nationwide to commemorate the victims of national socialism on the International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January, which marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)
Former camp prisoner Israeli Naftali Fuerst speaks to pupils about his experiences in the concentration camps Auschwitz and Buchenwald at the federal state parliament in Erfurt, Germany, 27 January 2014. A dialogue with contemporary witnesses is part of the memorial  events held nationwide to commemorate the victims of national socialism on the International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January, which marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)Former camp prisoner Israeli Naftali Fuerst speaks to pupils about his experiences in the concentration camps Auschwitz and Buchenwald at the federal state parliament in Erfurt, Germany, 27 January 2014. A dialogue with contemporary witnesses is part of the memorial events held nationwide to commemorate the victims of national socialism on the International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January, which marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)
Former camp prisoner, Israeli Noah Klieger speaks during a ceremony marking 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz in the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)Former camp prisoner, Israeli Noah Klieger speaks during a ceremony marking 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz in the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)
Former camp prisoners cry at a ceremony marking 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz in the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)Former camp prisoners cry at a ceremony marking 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz in the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)
Former camp prisoner, Polish writer Zofia Posmysz speaks during a ceremony marking 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz in the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)Former camp prisoner, Polish writer Zofia Posmysz speaks during a ceremony marking 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz in the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)
Delegation of the Israeli Knesset visit the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz-Birkenau marking 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)Delegation of the Israeli Knesset visit the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz-Birkenau marking 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)
Delegation of the Israeli Knesset visit the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz-Birkenau marking 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)Delegation of the Israeli Knesset visit the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz-Birkenau marking 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)
Delegation of the Israeli Knesset visit the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz-Birkenau marking 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)Delegation of the Israeli Knesset visit the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz-Birkenau marking 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)
Delegation of the Israeli Knesset visit the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz-Birkenau marking 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)Delegation of the Israeli Knesset visit the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz-Birkenau marking 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)
Delegation of the Israeli Knesset visit the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz-Birkenau marking 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)Delegation of the Israeli Knesset visit the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz-Birkenau marking 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)
Delegation of the Israeli Knesset visit the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz-Birkenau marking 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)Delegation of the Israeli Knesset visit the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz-Birkenau marking 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)
Former camp prisoners lay a wreath and flowers at the Death Wall in the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz I, marking the 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)Former camp prisoners lay a wreath and flowers at the Death Wall in the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz I, marking the 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. (Credit: EPA)
epa04044141 Former camp prisoners lay a wreath and flowers at the Death Wall in the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz I, marking the 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. POLAND OUT (Credit: PAP)epa04044141 Former camp prisoners lay a wreath and flowers at the Death Wall in the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz I, marking the 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. POLAND OUT (Credit: PAP)
epa04044140 Former camp prisoners lay a wreath and flowers at the Death Wall in the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz I, marking the 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. POLAND OUT (Credit: PAP)epa04044140 Former camp prisoners lay a wreath and flowers at the Death Wall in the former German Nazi Concentration Camp KL Auschwitz I, marking the 69th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz, in Oswiecim, Poland, 27 January 2014. The International Holocaust Remembrance Day on 27 January marks the liberation of the biggest German Nazi death camp, Auschwitz, by Soviet forces on 27 January 1945. POLAND OUT (Credit: PAP)
Adults and children walk with candles towards a church in Berlin, Germany, 26 January 2014. The event takes place on the eve of the International Holocaust Remembrance Day (Yom HaShoah) held on 27 January. (Credit: EPA)Adults and children walk with candles towards a church in Berlin, Germany, 26 January 2014. The event takes place on the eve of the International Holocaust Remembrance Day (Yom HaShoah) held on 27 January. (Credit: EPA)

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