A moment of silence after lighting six candles for the six million Jews who perished during the Holocaust.
The Embassy of Israel in the Philippines collaborated with the Department of Education for the annual commemoration of International Holocaust Remembrance Day, with this year’s theme: Home and Belonging.
Israeli Ambassador to the Philippines Ilan Fluss thanked the Vice President of the Republic of the Philippines and Secretary of the Department of Education Hon. Sara Duterte and her team who organized the event and made the 27th of January a formal day of commemorating the holocaust in all DepEd schools and facilities.
“The Holocaust is the darkest time in human history – especially for the Jewish people. It was an unprecedented event from 1942 to 1945 when Nazi Germany attempted to annihilate the Jewish people. Six million Jews – one third of the Jewish population – were murdered for the sole reason that they were Jewish,” Ambassador Fluss explained. “Today we are witnessing voices of denial of the holocaust and increasing antisemitism. This cannot be ignored; we can never let it happen again. We must remember, learn, teach, educate, and say – never again.”
The Ambassador also remembered the act of former president of the Philippines Manuel Quezon of opening the country’s doors to over 1,300 Jewish refugees fleeing the Nazi regime in 1939. “Pres. Quezon saved not only those individuals but also their future families.”
The International Holocaust Remembrance Day is the day that the United Nations urges every member state to honor the victims of the Holocaust. It marks the anniversary of the day in 1945 when the main extermination camp Auschwitz-Birkenau – where more than a million Jews were exterminated – was liberated by the allies.
The ceremony was held on the 26th of January at Bulwagan ng Karunungan, DepEd Complex in Pasig City. In attendance were officials and staff from the Embassy of Israel, Department of Education, representatives from the Department of Foreign Affairs, and members of the Jewish community in the Philippines.