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July 7, 2020 4:12 pm

IHRA Condemns Efforts Around Globe to Rehabilitate Reputations of Holocaust Criminals

avatar by Algemeiner Staff

Nazi leader Adolf Hitler accepts the ovation of the Reichstag after announcing the ‘peaceful’ acquisition of Austria, in Berlin, Germany, March 1938. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

The International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) issued a statement on Tuesday condemning “any attempts to rehabilitate the reputations of anyone who was complicit of the crimes of the Holocaust and the genocide of the Roma.”

The statement was unanimously agreed upon at a virtual IHRA plenary meeting.

“At a time of multiple crises, when the facts of history are increasingly distorted, it is essential the IHRA take a clear stance when it comes to the rehabilitation of such problematic figures,” IHRA President Ambassador Michaela Küchler said. “This issue, which violates our common principles, affects countries involved in the IHRA and beyond.”

Addressing the meeting, Dr. Robert Williams – the chair of the Committee on Antisemitism and Holocaust Denial — noted, “Our shared memories of the past are inherently flawed and malleable. To do justice to the loss of the Holocaust and to help affirm a better public and common understanding, our memories need good history built on facts and analysis because, at the end of the day, history always stands a better chance of proving that old British axiom: truth will out.”

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The head of the UK IHRA delegation, Lord Eric Pickles, declared, “Failure to remember truthfully demeans the living and disrespects the dead. The issue is simple: participants in the Holocaust, whether directly or indirectly, are incapable, within a civilized society, of having their reputations rehabilitated.”

Einars Mikelsons — the head of the Latvian delegation — said, “As a representative of a country that experienced three occupations and regained independence just decades ago, I know that dealing with the historic past is not easy. I see the tendency to rewrite the history of the Second World War for political reasons in some countries and I wholeheartedly support the adoption of the IHRA statement.”

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