In Brief: German president visits Auschwitz with survivors 75 years after camp was liberated

Frank-Walter Steinmeier visited Auschwitz on Monday, calling the former Nazi concentration camp “a place of horror and a place of German guilt.”

Photo (c) Paweł Sawicki Courtesy of Muzeum Auschwitz

 

 

Monday marked 75 years since Soviet troops liberated the Nazi concentration camp, Auschwitz.

Yesterday, on International Holocaust Remembrance Day, German Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier met Auschwitz survivors at the Bellevue Palace in Tiergarten before flying to Poland to lay a wreath at the former concentration camp.

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Bundespräsident Steinmeier hat heute die Gedenkstätte im früheren NS-Vernichtungslager Auschwitz besucht, das heute vor 75 Jahren befreit wurde. Er sagt: „Wer den Weg in die Barbarei von Auschwitz kennt, der muss den Anfängen wehren! Das ist Teil der Verantwortung, die keinen Schlussstrich kennt.“ Gemeinsam mit dem polnischen Präsidenten Andrzej Duda, dem Präsidenten des Staates Israel, Reuven Rivlin, und weiteren Staats- und Regierungschefs nahm er an der offiziellen Gedenkveranstaltung teil. Mehr in der Story ⬆️ +++ Federal President Steinmeier visited the memorial and museum at the former Nazi concentration and extermination camp of Auschwitz-Birkenau, which was liberated 75 years ago today. He said: "Anyone who knows the way to the barbarity of Auschwitz must resist the beginnings! That is part of the responsibility that knows no end." Together with @prezident_pl of Poland, @presidentruvi of Israel and other heads of state and government, he took part in the official commemoration ceremony. Find out more in the story ⬆️ #weremember #niewieder #neverforget #neveragain #holocaust #holocaustremembranceday #auschwitz #auschwitz75 #geschichte #israel #poland #bundespräsident #steinmeier

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“The times are different today, the words are different, the actions are different,” Steinmeier said in a speech. “But sometimes, when we look back into these times, we have the impression that the evil is still there, that the evil is the same.”

The German president said that’s why, when in Auschwitz, they talk not only about the past but also of a “lasting responsibility” to resist the start or resurgence of such acts.

More than one million people were murdered at Auschwitz. A majority of the victims were Jewish.

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On Friday, Britain will make its official break from the European Union. Berlin’s Chamber of Commerce and Industry said in a statement that Brexit will “not initially have a direct impact on Berlin’s economy.”

According to the organization, more than 400 companies from Berlin will keep strong ties to Great Britain. They say the country remains the sixth most important export market for the city.

Still there are significant challenges ahead. There will be transitional regulations in place until the end of this year, but it’s unclear what a trade agreement will look like in 2021.

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The Attorney General’s Office here in Berlin has charged the right-wing extremist Andrè M. with 107 crimes.

The 31-year-old is said to have sent bomb threats under the pseudonym “National Sozialistische Offensive” to politicians, courts, police officers, and the media.

Andrè M. was arrested in April 2019. He’s been in custody since.

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