Poland, Israel sign joint declaration on anti-Semitism

Source: Xinhua| 2018-06-28 03:18:08|Editor: Mu Xuequan
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WARSAW, June 27 (Xinhua) -- Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki and his Israeli counterpart Benjamin Netanyahu signed a joint declaration on Wednesday, condemning all forms of anti-Semitism and acknowledging the memory of the Holocaust.

The declaration was signed during simultaneous press conferences, which held in Poland and Israel. Morawiecki read the joint declaration in Warsaw.

"Polish and Israeli governments strongly condemn any form of anti-Semitism and express willingness to stand against any of its forms. Both governments also condemn anti-Polonism or any other negative stereotypes about the nations," the declaration stated.

Both sides agreed that: "the term 'Polish concentration/death camps' was... erroneous and diminished the responsibility of Germans for establishing those camps."

"It is clear that the Holocaust was an unprecedented crime committed by Nazi Germany against the Jewish people... Poland has always expressed the highest understanding of the importance of the Holocaust as the most tragic part of the Jewish people's experience," Morawiecki read.

"In the past 30 years, contacts between our countries have been based on trust and understanding...Israel and Poland are friends and partners that work closely together in the international arena, but also in relation to the memory of the Holocaust," the declaration wrote.

Israel also welcomed the decision taken by the Polish government to establish the official Polish group dedicated to the dialogue on historical issues.

Earlier on that day, Polish parliament passed an amendment to the anti-defamation law, or the Act on the Institute of National Remembrance (IPN), resigning from imposing criminal penalties for attributing Nazi crimes to the Polish state.

Polish President Andrzej Duda's chief aide Krzysztof Szczerski said on the same day that Duda has signed the amendment into law.

Netanyahu said in a live announcement in Israel: "I'm pleased that the Polish government, the parliament, the Senate and the president of Poland decided today to fully rescind the clauses that were signed and caused a storm and consternation in Israel and among the international community."

The anti-defamation law, which was also signed by Duda in February this year, proposed to jail or fines a person who blames Poland or the Poles for Nazi crimes against humanity which were committed in Nazi-occupied Poland during World War II. This law sparked uproar in Israel, United States and Ukraine.