More than 10,000 join March Of The Living to remember Holocaust victims
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More than 10,000 join March Of The Living to remember Holocaust victims

British delegation included Holocaust Educational Trust regional ambassadors and representatives from Chelsea Football Club

  • Jewish Agency chair Isaac Herzog at March of the Living
    Jewish Agency chair Isaac Herzog at March of the Living
  • US ambassador delegation at Auschwitz
    US ambassador delegation at Auschwitz
  • Young Jews from around the world walk with Israeli flags through the former Nazi German death camp of Auschwitz-Birkenau during the annual Holocaust remembrance event, the "March of the Living" in memory of the six million Holocaust victims in Oswiecim, Poland, Thursday, May 2, 2019. (AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski)
    Young Jews from around the world walk with Israeli flags through the former Nazi German death camp of Auschwitz-Birkenau during the annual Holocaust remembrance event, the "March of the Living" in memory of the six million Holocaust victims in Oswiecim, Poland, Thursday, May 2, 2019. (AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski)
  • People from South Korea around the world walk with Israeli flags through the former Nazi German death camp of Auschwitz-Birkenau during the annual Holocaust remembrance event, the "March of the Living" in memory of the six million Holocaust victims in Oswiecim, Poland, Thursday, May 2, 2019. (AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski)
    People from South Korea around the world walk with Israeli flags through the former Nazi German death camp of Auschwitz-Birkenau during the annual Holocaust remembrance event, the "March of the Living" in memory of the six million Holocaust victims in Oswiecim, Poland, Thursday, May 2, 2019. (AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski)
  • Young Jews from around the world walk with Israeli flags through the former Nazi German death camp of Auschwitz-Birkenau during the annual Holocaust remembrance event, the "March of the Living" in memory of the six million Holocaust victims in Oswiecim, Poland, Thursday, May 2, 2019.(AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski)
    Young Jews from around the world walk with Israeli flags through the former Nazi German death camp of Auschwitz-Birkenau during the annual Holocaust remembrance event, the "March of the Living" in memory of the six million Holocaust victims in Oswiecim, Poland, Thursday, May 2, 2019.(AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski)
  • People from South Korea around the world walk with Israeli flags through the former Nazi German death camp of Auschwitz-Birkenau during the annual Holocaust remembrance event, the "March of the Living" in memory of the six million Holocaust victims in Oswiecim, Poland, Thursday, May 2, 2019. (AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski)
    People from South Korea around the world walk with Israeli flags through the former Nazi German death camp of Auschwitz-Birkenau during the annual Holocaust remembrance event, the "March of the Living" in memory of the six million Holocaust victims in Oswiecim, Poland, Thursday, May 2, 2019. (AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski)
  • Holocaust Educational Trust Ambassadors from the UK with Shoah survivor, Mala Tribich. The HET ambassadors are Georgia (George) Adkins, Jaya Pathak, Jamie Dickinson, James Milton and Jack Nicholls.
    Holocaust Educational Trust Ambassadors from the UK with Shoah survivor, Mala Tribich. The HET ambassadors are Georgia (George) Adkins, Jaya Pathak, Jamie Dickinson, James Milton and Jack Nicholls.

More than 10,000 Jewish and non-Jewish people from 40 countries joined Holocaust survivors and politicians for the 31st annual March of the Living ceremony at Auschwitz located in southern Poland.

Thousands of participants carrying Israeli flags and Say NO To Antisemitism banners took part in the march, focusing on fighting antisemitism and hatred, while remembering the six million Jews who perished in the Shoah.

The march follows a 1.8 mile (3km) route between the two parts of the former Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp operated by German Nazis.

The UK delegation was organised by March of the Living UK, which included 300 participants and 9 buses, the largest there has ever been.

Buses were accompanied by 8 Holocaust Survivors and one was composed of faith leaders from different religious communities. Writing in the Jewish News, The Reverend Margaret Cave Team Rector of the Church of England East Greenwich Team Ministry, reflected on taking part in the march with other faith leaders. Read her column here.

Within the March of Living UK group, the Holocaust Educational Trust sent a delegation including regional ambassadors Georgia Adkins, Jaya Pathak, Jamie Dickinson, James Milton and Jack Nicholls, pictured below with survivor Mala Tribich.

Left-right: Holocaust Educational Trust Ambassadors Jack Nicholls; James Milton with Mala Tribich MBE, Holocaust survivor, Georgia Adkins; Jaya Pathak and Jamie Dickinson

The Board of Deputies of British Jews was represented on the March of the Living in Poland by its treasurer Stuart MacDonald.

At the former Birkenau site, where Jews from around Europe were brought by train and killed in gas chambers between 1942-45, participants placed wooden signs with the names of relatives who died in the Holocaust on remaining train tracks.

The march takes place every year on Israel’s Holocaust Remembrance Day, Yom HaShoah, having began in 1988 as part of an education program for young Jews.

Six US ambassadors, including ambassador to Israel David M Friedman and Georgette Mosbacher, the ambassador to Poland, were among the international representatives who attended.

Young Jews from around the world walk with Israeli flags through the former Nazi German death camp of Auschwitz-Birkenau during the annual Holocaust remembrance event, the “March of the Living” in memory of the six million Holocaust victims in Oswiecim, Poland, Thursday, May 2, 2019. (AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski)

Romanian prime minister Viorica Dancila and Poland’s agriculture minister also walked in the march.

After launching its Say No To Antisemitism campaign in 2018, Chelsea Football Club, and American side New England Revolution, sent a delegation on the March Of The Living.

Management and Academy players from the Blues joined the march as a part of the educational campaign against antisemitism, including  club CEO Guy Laurence and director Eugene Tenenbaum, as well as ex-manager, Avram Grant.

Last week, Grant last week paid tribute to the club’s Jewish Russian owner Roman Abrahamovich for personally backing the campaign, while New England Revolution’s owner, Robert Kraft, has also lent support to the fight against racism.

An estimated 1.1 million people died at Auschwitz-Birkenau during Nazi Germany’s Second World War occupation of Poland, most of them European Jews but also Polish resistance members, Roma and Russian prisoners of war.

The Chelsea-New England Revolution delegation at Auschwitz

The international contingent at the march included a special delegation of US Ambassadors and White House representatives headed by the US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman.

A distinguished delegation honouring Greek Jewry, which was almost completely annihilated by the Nazis, was headed by His All-Holiness Bartholomew I Archbishop of Constantinople New Rome and Ecumenical Patriarch, and the Speaker of the Greek Parliament, Mr. Nikos Voutsis.

In the wake of the recent San Diego Chabad shooting and Tree of Life shul massacre in October, Dr. Shmuel Rosenman, Founder and Co-Chairman of the March of the Living, told participants at the march that “In taking part in the March of the Living, you are marching at a time when a growing wave of antisemitism is yet again sweeping the world. But in truth, anti-Semitism never really disappeared – it simply lay barely hidden under the surface waiting for the right time to strike again. And strike it did – in deadly fashion – at the Eitz Chaim synagogue in Pittsburgh last year, and just a few days ago, on the last day of Passover, at the Chabad synagogue in Poway.”

People from South Korea around the world walk with Israeli flags through the former Nazi German death camp of Auschwitz-Birkenau during the annual Holocaust remembrance event, the “March of the Living” in memory of the six million Holocaust victims in Oswiecim, Poland, Thursday, May 2, 2019. (AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski)

“But today, on Yom Hashoah we gather together in Auschwitz to mourn our 6 million ancestors, a third of the entire Jewish people, who were murdered in the most unprecedented genocide in history. Today, we proclaim to our enemies with a loud and clear voice: We shall not be defeated! We will return here year after year to raise our voices against antisemitism and, indeed, against all forms of racism and hatred. As a survivor of Auschwitz once said, the only one thing worse than Auschwitz is if the world ever forgets that there was an Auschwitz. We promise to never allow that to happen.”

Jewish Agency Chairman Isaac Herzog warned marchers at Birkenau, about the rise in hate around the world. He said!: “It cannot be that 74 years after this wretched war, Jews are once again unsafe on the streets of Europe.

Jewish Agency chair Isaac Herzog at March of the Living

“Jews cannot be murdered in Pittsburgh and Poway or anywhere! Let us heed the warning and take to heart the lessons of the Holocaust. World leaders must unite in zero tolerance for hate crimes of any kind.”

His All-Holiness Bartholomew I Archbishop of Constantinople New Rome and Ecumenical Patriarch echoed warnings about rising hate, saying: “Silence in the face of helpless suffering and the ideologies of racism and intolerance only exacerbates this problem.

“We must do everything in our powers to prevent another tragedy like the Holocaust. The only way to accomplish this is by striking down all actions that are an afront to our basic humanity.”

The day before the march, more than 200 young leaders from 10 countries – Jewish and non-Jewish – gathered at Jageillonian University in Krakow, to take part in the first-ever ‘Emerging Leadership Conference’; launched in response to the torrent of antisemitic events over the last two years.

The march also saw the lighting of six torches, each one honouring a different group of Holocaust heroes, while other high-profile participants included Holocaust survivor and Former Israeli Chief Rabbi Israel Lau, as well as Israel’s Ambassador to the United Nations Danny Danon and envoys from Argentina, Latvia, Guatemala, and Honduras.

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