European Parliament President warns of return of ‘demon of antisemitism’

David Sassoli has warned that the lessons of history are being forgotten, as the world marks Holocaust Remebrance Day, 76 years since the Auschwitz Nazi concentration camp was liberated

European Parliament President David Sassoli
European Parliament President David Sassoli

The “demon of antisemitism” is returning around the world as the lessons of history are being forgotten, the President of the European Parliament has warned.

David Sassoli was speaking on Wednesday as he participated in a virtual ceremony marking Holocaust Remembrance Day – 76 years since Allied troops liberated the Auschwitz-Birkenau Nazi concentration camp.

The European Parliament will be marking Holocaust Remembrance Day during its plenary session on Friday. Sassoli invited holocaust survivor, now Italian senator, Liliana Segre to address the session.

The EP president will then be attending the Fifth World Holocaust Forum before addressing the Israeli parliament.

Sassoli said the European Union was created in the shadow of Auschwitz, to reunite Europe and ensure that the horrors of the Second World War could never happen again.

“The Shoah remains the single greatest crime against humanity and, worryingly, it seems as though the lessons of history are being forgotten,” he said.

“It is with incredulity and immense anger that we watch the demon of antisemitism returning in Europe and across the world.”

Sassoli said that recent attacks in Halle and New York, threats against Jewish citizens and politicians, and acts of vandalism on graveyards and shops in many European countries, were reminiscent of a period he hoped had ended long ago.

“In Jerusalem this week we must remember the darkest moments of Europe’s history but also discuss what we can do to tackle the new rise of hatred and antisemitism across the globe,” he said.

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