UK: Muslim Council of Britain ends boycott of Holocaust Memorial Day

For the first time ever, representatives of Great Britain's largest Muslim umbrella organization will take part Sunday in the international Holocaust Memorial Day. Two months ago, the Muslim Council of Britain (MBC) decided to put an end to their six year boycott of the Memorial Day. The international Remembrance Day was first instituted by the UN in 2001 on the day - January 27th - that the Auschwitz extermination camp was liberated by the Allied forces.

"More than 60 years after the liberation of Belsen, Treblinka and Auschwitz, and as the last of the survivors now grow old, we simply cannot afford to forget," British Prime Minister Gordon Brown said in a letter publicized in the London Telegraph Sunday.

"Each generation must learn and understand the dark forces and culpable failures that allowed prejudice, discrimination and persecution to lead to a vast programme of mass slaughter that spanned a continent."

Brown noted that 4000 British students are expected to visit the Auschwitz death camp next year.

The official ceremony will take place in Liverpool, however their will be commemorative ceremonies through out the country. U.K. chief Rabbi Jonathan Sacks and the Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams will speak at the memorial service.

The MBC's decision to take part in the memorial day comes after they were harshly criticized of anti-Semitism by Jewish groups and the British government.

"The decision was taken because staying away was doing more harm than good and being misconstrued," a MCB spokesperson told The London Times last month.

Source: Haaretz (English)

See also: British Muslim council boycotts Holocaust Memorial Day

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

So it's essentially an admission that 'It's making us look bad' -- Holocaust victims and genocide have nothing to do with the decision.