"We must firmly and forcefully condemn the anti-Semitism that is still far too common today," United States President Barack Obama said Thursday in a statement issued by the White House to mark Holocaust Remembrance Day.
"Together we must stand against bigotry and hatred in all their forms. And together, we can leave our children a world that is more just, more free, and more secure for all humankind."
The president described the day as an occasion "to reaffirm our responsibilities to ourselves and future generations. It is incumbent upon us to make real those timeless words, 'Never forget. Never again.'”
He added that "even as we recognize that mankind is capable of unspeakable acts of evil, we also draw strength from the survivors, the liberators, and the righteous among nations who represented humanity at its best."
The European Union also marked Holocaust Remembrance Day and condemned anti-Semitism in a statement issued on Wednesday by its delegation in Israel.
“Innocent men, women and children were murdered by the Nazis and their accomplices, simply for being Jewish." the statement said. "Honoring their memory means for us to stand strong against anti-Semitism, prejudice and racial discrimination in all their forms and wherever they occur.”
The EU noted that “70 years after the Shoah, we still encounter anti-Semitism in Europe. There are Jewish communities in Europe that again feel insecure and we have been sadly reminded that violent anti-Semitism, intolerance and fanaticism remain a threat."
Describing the EU as "a union built on the values of human dignity and human rights after the tragedies of two world wars and the Shoah," the statement said that "we will not allow the return of the demons of anti-Semitism, racism and intolerance. Never forget. Never again.”
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