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September 20, 2021



Slovak MEP of Romani origin rebukes fellow MEPs who are Holocaust deniers

27.1.2020 12:19
Peter Pollák (PHOTO: European Parliament)
Peter Pollák (PHOTO: European Parliament)

Speaking last week on the floor of the European Parliament ahead of International Holocaust Remembrance Day, Slovak MEP Peter Pollák, who is of Romani origin, criticized denial of the Holocaust and sharply rebuked the Holocaust deniers among his fellow MEPs. "The Nazis killed millions of innocent people in a camp just because many of them believed the devil Adolf Hitler, or at the very least did nothing to stop him, they believed his ideas about racial superiority. There is no superior race, no human being is inferior to the rest. Millions of people died just because they were Romani or Jewish. If Hitler had won the war, I wouldn't be here today because I am Romani," he said.

"It is a disgrace to this Parliament that there are also people seated in this room who deny the Holocaust. Dear fascists, the Holocaust happened. Don't make stuff up and don't twist the meaning of the tragic events of the Second World War," Pollák said, adding that some people died during the war just because many others had been silent about what was happening.

"We cannot be quiet today if fascists are twisting the meaning of the past and are espousing hatred, we cannot accept any hatred of difference, because hate is the road to hell," Pollák said in his speech, footage of which he then posted online. International Holocaust Remembrance Day falls on 27 January each year.

The international day was officially declared by the United Nations General Assembly on 1 November 2005 at its 42nd plenary session. This day is for commemorating the suffering of the approximately six million Jews, hundreds of thousands of Roma and millions of other innocent victims during the Second World War.

The date of 27 January was chosen deliberately, as the Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz-Birkenau was liberated by the Red Army of the USSR on 27 January 1945, but the day also serves as a symbol of the liberation of all other Nazi concentration camps. The Czech Republic declared 27 January to be an important day for that reason for the first time as a democratic state in the year 2000 at the initiative of the Czech Council for the Victims of Nazism, the Federation of Jewish Communities in the Czech Republic, and other organizations, and it was subsequently established there in 2004 as "Day of Holocaust Remembrance and the Prevention of Crimes Against Humanity".

kal, translated by Gwendolyn Albert
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