Speaker of the Seimas: Today, we repent for the harm inflicted on the Jewish people
Press release, 23 September 2018
Viktoras Pranckietis, Speaker of the Seimas, paid tribute to the victims of the Holocaust at the Memorial Museum of Paneriai.
The Speaker laid flowers at the Memorial to honour the victims. “Today, we repent for the harm inflicted on the Jewish people. As we are standing in front of the monument sending us a silent but profound message, we must speak out loudly to ensure that these atrocities do not happen ever again and that nobody has to ever go through that kind of experience which is beyond words,” the Speaker said.
The 23rd of September marks the liquidation, in 1943, of the Vilnius Ghetto, a symbol of the Holocaust in Lithuania. Lithuanians, mostly Jews, were sent to the concentration camps, while about 100 thousand people were shot dead in the Paneriai Forest.
Photos of the Office of the Seimas (author Džoja Gunda Barysaitė)
“As we drive along the Lithuanian roads and lanes, we may pass by brown road signs marking the sad silent places. They seem to be crying out as if pointing to the burial places of the Jewish children, women and men. Those places bury the bodies but not the pain. Pain is perpetual, it lasts as long as we live; as long as there are those six out of one hundred who survived the ordeal or were saved by the Righteous among the Nations,” said Mr Pranckietis.
This year, the national Day of Remembrance of the Genocide of Jews coincided with the visit of His Holiness Pope Francis.
“Today, Pope Francis has joined the people of Lithuania in prayer for the souls of the killed and for the nations bound by repentance,” said the Speaker of the Seimas at the ceremony.
Karolina Frolovienė, Spokesperson of the Speaker of the Seimas, tel.+370 5239 6016, e-mail: [email protected]