2 August 2020
Survivor of the Srebrencia Genocide, founder of “Srebrenica – City of Hope”
Statement on the occasion of the European Holocaust Memorial Day for Sinti and Roma 2020
For many years I was involved with ternYpe in the organization of the youth remembrance event “Dik he na Bister” and of the “Rromani Resistance Day” as well. Today we remember the Roma and Sinti victims during WWII and the liquidation of the “Zigeunerlager” in Auschwitz-Birkenau. Remembrance is often empty if not followed by actions. We said many times “remember” and “never again” after WWII, but the same brutalities happened again in different parts of the world like Rwanda, Srebrenica and many others. I was personally touched by the Srebrenica Genocide in July 1995 when I lost many of my relatives including my father and I spent my whole childhood in war time.
We live in a Europe faced with economic crises, and exactly like before WWII, there is a rise of nationalism and hate speech against minorities and vulnerable groups.
We live in a world faced with the “migrant crisis” and a human crisis of values, as we forgot what means to act in solidarity.
We live in a world faced with “climate change” where our lifestyle and the human race are killing entire ecosystems.
There is an individual level in all of this, in which each of us is guilty and each of us is a change-maker.
We study the history but we often forget, that in each moment of our life we are writing the history. If we really want to pay tribute to the victims of WWII we have to keep in mind that this is our time, this is our planet and we have the power in our hands to build a better world for our children.
President of Austria
President of North Macedonia
President of the Slovak Republic
President of Romania
President of the European Parliament
Secretary-General of the Council of Europe
Commissioner for Equality, European Commission
Chair of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance
Director of the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights
President of the German Bundestag
Deputy Marshal of the Sejm, Poland
Ambassador of Canada in Germany, Special Representative of Canada to the EU and to Europe
President of the World Jewish Congress
Chairman of the Central Council of German Sinti and Roma
President of the Association of Roma in Poland
Director of the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum
Director, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
Chair of the Synod of the Evangelical Church in Germany (EKD)
President of the Central Council of Jews in Germany
Chair of the Board of Trustees of the EVZ Foundation