Warsaw commemorates WWII ghetto uprising

11:12, April 20, 2011      

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Government officials of Poland, Warsaw authorities, foreign diplomats, members of Jewish organizations and school youth on Tuesday marked the 68th anniversary of the 1943 anti-Nazi uprising in Warsaw's Jewish ghetto.

The commemoration began with a ceremony in front of the Ghetto Heroes Memorial, where flowers were laid by Polish Culture Minister Bogdan Zdrojewski, Warsaw Mayor Hanna Gronkiewicz-Waltz and officials from the Israeli, U.S. and German embassies in Warsaw.

Polish President Bronislaw Komorowski was represented by his aide Tomasz Nalecz.

Piotr Kadlcik, head of the Association of Jewish Religious Communities in Poland, recalled that the ghetto uprising had no strategic goals and was launched because Warsaw's Jews knew their fate and wanted to die with dignity.

"For us what happened during the war is something that happened almost yesterday. Only a few individuals survived from practically all Jewish families. We remember the ghetto rising, not only because we're Jews but because it was the first uprising against the Germans in occupied Europe," Kadlcik was quoted as saying by the PAP news agency.

The Warsaw Ghetto Rising broke out on April 19, 1943 in face of the ghetto's impending liquidation by the Germans. At the time the ghetto was inhabited by around 70,000 Jews, of whom 14,000 perished in the fighting. The survivors were deported to death camps. The uprising ended in failure on May 16, 1943.

Source: Xinhua
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