The memory of victims of the Holocaust was honoured today in Strasbourg in front of the Palais de l’Europe. Secretary General Thorbjørn Jagland led a ceremony of commemoration in the presence of Finnish President Sauli Niinistö and other guests, staff, diplomats and members of the Parliamentary Assembly.
During the Second World War and in the years that preceded it, Europe demonstrated the worst it was capable of. On the morning of 27 January 1945 the Auschwitz-Birkenau camps still held some 7,000 prisoners. Over a million people deported to Auschwitz perished there. It is estimated that six million Jews were exterminated in the death camps.
The Council of Europe and the European Convention on Human Rights are the institutional and legal embodiment of a commitment never to allow this to happen again on Europe’s soil. Never again!