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MESSAGE FROM PRIME MINISTER JULIA GILLARD

MESSAGE FROM PRIME MINISTER JULIA GILLARD

19 April 2012

YOM HASHOA - HOLOCAUST REMEMBRANCE DAY

On this day, in Israel and around the world, millions pause to mark Yom HaShoah, Holocaust Remembrance Day.

It is at once a day of intense memory, grief and reflection – and a day for commitment and renewal drawn from the lessons of this most horrific of crimes against humanity: the Nazis’ murder of over six million Jews.

From the days and months following the liberation of Europe, men and women throughout the world have struggled to come to grips with the scale of these atrocities, the depths of human depravity they exhibited, and the imperative of ensuring that such events can never, ever, happen again.

Undoubtedly, the world has learned from this genocide against the Jews, but we still have faced, in our times, other crimes against humanity in Cambodia, in Bosnia, in Sudan, and too many other places.

But the past has armed us with more than outrage. Because of the Holocaust, we are determined to expose and marshal the force of opinion, diplomacy and intervention wherever humanity faces killings on such a massive scale.

We would like to think that today, with technology and a wired world, what took so long to appreciate in all its horror – and it took years for the reality of the Holocaust to truly sink in – simply could not occur again.

The Jewish people survived the loss of six million souls, and rebuilt a homeland in Israel to ensure their future.

Today, on Yom HaShoah, we stand with the people of Israel in solemn memory, and we renew our commitment to Israel and its security.

The Honourable Julia Gillard

Prime Minister of Australia

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