December 10, 2023

The Auschwitz Memorial International Council has issued a heartfelt plea for the urgent and unconditional release of all hostages caught in the midst of the escalating conflict in Gaza, emphasizing the paramount importance of ending their suffering. “The International Auschwitz Council, represented by the Prime Minister of the Republic of Poland, acknowledges with the deepest pain and sorrow the suffering of innocent Victims – tortured, raped, taken hostage, and murdered by Hamas terrorists,” stated the Auschwitz Memorial International Council. “We wish to express our unwavering solidarity with Israelis and Jews worldwide,” the council emphasized. The council, including Deputy Chairman Dani Dayan, Chairman of the Yad Vashem Institute, and Deputy Chairman Albert Stankowski, Director of the Warsaw Ghetto Museum, affirmed, “Threatened in its existence, the State of Israel has the right to self-defense in accordance with international law and the principles of humanitarianism. The existence of a free, sovereign, and democratic Jewish State is one of the pillars of world peace.” “The unimaginable hatred and violence perpetrated by terrorists only results in extensive and more widespread suffering – affecting also the civilian population of Gaza, whom Hamas exploits as human shields,” warned the council. “An essential first step to halt the horrifying spiral of death and war is the immediate and unconditional release of all hostages, a demand we make with all our might,” the Auschwitz Memorial International Council concluded. The council also includes members such as Colette Avital, Israeli diplomat and politician; Michael Berenbaum, Director of the Sigi Ziering Institute; Sara Bloomfield, Director of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum; Piotr Cywiński, Director of the Auschwitz-Birkenau Memorial and Museum; Ronald Lauder, Chairman of the World Jewish Congress; and Marian Turski, Chairman of the International Auschwitz Committee, among others. These distinguished individuals play vital roles in Holocaust remembrance and education.