Polish PM Says 'Jewish Perpetrators' Remark Was a Call for 'Open Discussion' About the Holocaust

Mateusz Morawiecki releases clarification following uproar, says 'each crime must be judged individually'

Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki during the Munich Security Conference on February 17, 2018
THOMAS KIENZLE/AFP

Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki released a clarification on Sunday regarding the statements he made Saturday during a discussion in the Security Conference in Munich, saying there were "Jewish perpetrators" in the Holocaust. 

The new statement, published by the premier's spokeperson, said he "by no means intended to deny the Holocaust, or charge the Jewish victims of the Holocaust with responsibility for what was a Nazi German perpetrated genocide." 

It also stressed that his words "should be interpreted as a sincere call for open discussion of crimes committed against Jews during the Holocaust, regardless of the nationality" of those involved.

"Each crime must be judged individually, and no single act of wickedness should burden with responsibility entire nations, which were conquered and enslaved by Nazi Germany," said the statement.

"Attempts to equate the crimes of Nazi German perpetrators with the actions of their victims - Jewish, Polish, Romani among others - who struggled for survival should be met with resolute, outright condemnation," it added.

Morawiecki reiterated that Nazi Germany remains the sole culprit in the Holocaust, and that "before the Second World War, Jews lived, created, and worked in Poland for 800 years."

The statement further noted that Poland seeks to continue dialogue with Israel "in the spirit of truth and mutual trust."