The_Duke_and_Duchess_of_Cambridge_at_the_Sony_Pictures_StudiosThe memory of the Holocaust must be kept alive to “learn from the past and create a safer future”, Prince William has urged.

The second in line to the throne described the Nazi genocide as a “monstrous evil” in a message marking the 70th anniversary of the liberation to Auschwitz today.

His highly significant message to the Jewish News marks the Duke of Cambridge’s first ever public comments on the Holocaust or indeed to a specifically Jewish audience on any topic.

He said: “The theme of Holocast Memorial Day 2015 is “keeping the memory alive”. On the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz, we remember all those who suffered so terribly in the monstrous evil of the Holocaust. We must never forget the indescribable suffering, the millions of lives shattered and the human impact behind the statistics.

“The commemorations allow us to honour the victims of one of the darkest chapters in human history and pay tribute t the survivors and their stories of hope. Memories are the legacy for future generations and we must keep these memories alive to learn from the past and create a safer future.”

Today’s commemorations – including the national ceremony attended by politicians and religious figures in Westminster – come a year after the launch of David Cameron’s Holocaust Commission to explore what more Britain can do to ensure the memory is kept alive for future generations. The recommendations of the commissioners are expected to be published later today.

More than 2,400 memorial events are expected to take place in schools, places or worship and community centres on or around HMD. The central event is organised by the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust, whose patron is The Queen.

The Duke’s father, the Prince of Wales, has also shown a keen personal interest in this era and particularly in the plight of those who came to Britain on the Kindertransport – personally marking a number of special anniversaries of the life-saving mission together with the one-time refugees. He was also patron of World Jewish Relief’s project to open a Jewish community centre in Krakow.

For more information, see the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust: http://hmd.org.uk – Click here.