Statement by Catherine Ashton on International Holocaust Remembrance Day (28/01/2013)

The High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice-President of the Commission issued the following statement:

“On 27 January we remember the victims of the Holocaust. We honour every one of the six million who were brutally murdered in this darkest period of European history. I also want to pay special tribute to the survivors of the Holocaust, who remind us of this tragedy that we must never forget.

On International Holocaust Remembrance Day, we remember that this crime was not perpetrated by a few individuals. Many took part directly or indirectly and many more just let it happen. That is why we must remain vigilant. Genocide is caused by the violence of some and the indifference of others.

This Day also gives us a chance to celebrate the acts of courage and sacrifice which lit up Europe: neighbours who saved families, employers who rescued their employees and all those who protected their fellow citizens.

These acts are proof that we are not powerless against evil. That is a lesson which must guide us today; not just to remember the crimes of the past, but to dedicate ourselves to preventing all acts of hatred and standing up for fundamental rights and freedoms in our own time”.