Israel marks annual Holocaust Remembrance Day
Memorials and ceremonies were conducted in Israel Wednesday night and continue Thursday to mark the national day of mourning for the six million Jews who perished in the Holocaust and remember the many acts of heroism. President Reuven Rivlin and Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu joined survivors and their families at the central state ceremony at the Yad Vashem center in Jerusalem Wednesday.
At 10 a.m. Thursday, the country will observe two minutes silence.
People from all over the world gathered in Poland for the annual March of the Living from the Auschwitz extermination camp to Birkenau. This year event marked 70 years since the end of World War II and the Holocaust.
Pope Francis sent a message of support to the marchers, the first pontiff to do so since the event was established 27 years ago.
Tel Aviv University’s Kantor Center for the Study of Contemporary European Jewry recorded more than 770 violent anti-Semitic attacks worldwide in the past year, a 40 percent increase over the previous year. Most attacks took place in western European countries.
There are 189,000 Holocaust survivors living in Israel, 45,000 of them live in poverty, the Foundation for the Benefit of Holocaust Victims says in its annual report. Their average age is 83.3