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Tánaiste marks International Holocaust Remembrance Day

Diplomatic Relations, Commemorations, Press Releases, Middle East and North Africa, 2012

JERUSALEM, 27 January 2012 – Speaking on International Holocaust Remembrance Day, the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office, the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Mr. Eamon Gilmore T.D., who is currently on a visit to the Middle East, emphasized the need to continue to fight hate and intolerance.

The unique horrors of the Holocaust can never be forgotten. We can only truly honour the memory of the victims of the Holocaust by continuing to fight against anti-Semitism, discrimination against Roma and Sinti as well other forms of hate and intolerance present in our societies today,” he said.

“I will personally pay my respects during a visit to Yad Vashem in Jerusalem on Sunday.”

The persistence of anti-Semitic acts, as well as other hate crimes, is abhorrent, and International Holocaust Remembrance Day serves as a reminder of the need for OSCE participating States to do more to tackle these crimes in all their manifestations. This includes ensuring police and other agencies identify hate crimes and respond to them appropriately as well as preventing hate through tolerance education.”

The OSCE’s Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) publishes an annual report on hate crimes and incidents in the OSCE Region that also highlights best practices of participating States and civil society in tackling them.

ODIHR has also developed teaching materials for schools to combat anti-Semitism and other forms of intolerance. In 2012 ODIHR will release, in co-operation with the International Task Force on Holocaust Education, an update of its overview on Holocaust Memorial Days in the OSCE region.

Note for Editors:

The Tánaiste will visit Yad Vashem, the world center for documentation, research, education and commemoration of the Holocaust, in Jerusalem on Sunday 29 January.  While at Yad Vashem,  he will tour the Holocaust History Museum, participate in a memorial ceremony in the Hall of Remembrance and visit the Children's Memorial.

On 1 December 2011, Ireland was accepted as a member of the International Task Force on Holocaust Education, Remembrance and Research (ITF).  The Tánaiste earlier this week established a Standing Committee on Holocaust Education, Research and Remembrance to help coordinate Holocaust education, research and remembrance activities in Ireland and engagement with the International Task Force.  The Committee will include representatives of the Holocaust Education Trust Ireland and the Irish Jewish Museum.