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I am encouraging reflection on the darkest days of European history in advance of Holocaust Memorial Day on 27th January – the anniversary of the liberation of the Nazi concentration and death camp Auschwitz-Birkenau.

Established in 2000, Holocaust Memorial Day is an opportunity to commemorate the 6 millions Jewish men, women and children who were victims of the Holocaust and also victims of more recent genocides.  The day is co-ordinated by the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust.

Each year’s Holocaust Memorial Day has a different theme, as a focus for educational and commemorative events. The theme for 2021 is ‘Be the Light in the Darkness’ and this year the Holocaust Educational Trust is encouraging reflection on Jewish resistance during the Holocaust; rescue; justice; the legacy of Holocaust survivors; and the action of educating the next generation to carry these stories forward. 

Holocaust Memorial Day is an important opportunity for people to reflect on the darkest days of European history. In previous years I have had the privilege of signing the Book of Commitment and speaking to Holocaust survivors whose memories of the awful things they witnessed are as vivid today as they were nearly eighty years ago. 

It is harder to mark this important day this year due to the ongoing pandemic, but the Holocaust Educational Trust are running several online events which I would encourage all constituents to join.

The day will come when none of these witnesses are left alive and as the Holocaust moves from living history to history, it becomes ever more important that we take the time to remember lives lost to this and other genocides.

Further details of online events and resources can be found here.

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