Holocaust Memorial Days: An overview (excerpts), 2018

Chapter I: Commemoration

Overview

Of the 57 OSCE participating States, 36 provided responses to the section of the ODIHR questionnaire concerning their efforts to promote Holocaust commemoration.17 The answers indicate that the Holocaust and the extermination and persecution of Roma and Sinti during this time are commemorated widely throughout the OSCE area. Thirty-three participating States reported that they commemorate the Holocaust officially or unofficially,18 while three participating States stated that they do not commemorate the Holocaust (Graph 1).19 Concerning the Roma and Sinti genocide, 27 participating States reported that activities to commemorate the victims of Roma and Sinti persecution and extermination are organized both officially and unofficially throughout the year,20 while nine states gave a negative answer (Graph 2).21

17 The 36 states that responded to ODIHR’s questionnaire are: Albania, Andorra, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Greece, the Holy See, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Moldova, Monaco, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine and the United States

18 The 33 states that commemorate the Holocaust officially or unofficially are: Albania, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Moldova, Monaco, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine and the United States.

20 The 27 states that commemorate the Roma and Sinti genocide officially or unofficially are: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Moldova, Monaco, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine and the United States.

Among those participating States that commemorate the Holocaust, 25 have
established one official Holocaust Memorial Day,22 five have established more than one such day,23 and three commemorate the Holocaust on non-official days (Graph 3).24 The latter does not, however, imply that commemorative activities are necessarily of a smaller scale; an “official” memorial day is simply one established by an official act. Furthermore, 22 participating States indicated that they have established official days to commemorate the Roma and Sinti genocide,25 while another five states commemorate the event unofficially (Graph 4).26 Moreover, 17 participating States reported that they officially commemorate other victim groups of National Socialism.27 Importantly, these findings display the total number of participating States commemorating the Holocaust, the extermination and persecution of Roma and Sinti and/or other groups victimized by National Socialism, regardless of whether they are commemorated jointly or separately.

22 The 25 states that have established one official Holocaust Memorial Day are: Albania, Austria, Bulgaria, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Moldova, Monaco, Netherlands, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey and Ukraine.

26 The five states that commemorate the Roma and Sinti genocide on unofficial days are: Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova and Norway.

27 The 17 states that have established officials days to commemorate other victim groups of National Socialism are: Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Luxembourg, Poland, Portugal, Serbia, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland and the United States.

Of the 33 participating States that commemorate the Holocaust, the majority (23) reported observing 27 January as an official Holocaust Memorial Day.28 Importantly, nine participating States stated that although 27 January is not officially established as a memorial day, Holocaust commemoration events are held on that date.29 Two participating States officially commemorate the Holocaust on Yom HaShoah,30 while four other states hold non-official commemorations on this date.31 Moreover, ten participating States reported that they have established Holocaust Memorial Days on dates of specific significance to their countries’ histories (Graph 5).32

29 The nine states that hold unofficial commemorative events on 27 January are: Azerbaijan, Bulgaria, Canada, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Norway and Slovakia.

32 The ten states that observe other dates of specific significance as official Holocaust Memorial Days are: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Serbia and Slovakia.

Of the 27 participating States that commemorate the Roma and Sinti genocide, 17 do so on 27 January.33 Among those states, only Latvia has not established this day as an official commemoration day for this purpose. Twelve OSCE participating States reported that they hold commemorative events to mark the Roma and Sinti genocide on 2 August,34 with four participating States establishing this date officially.35 Nine states commemorate the Roma and Sinti genocide on other days,36 of which seven do so officially (Graph 6).37 As the data indicate, some states have designated more than one day to commemorate the victims of the Roma and Sinti genocide.

33 The 17 states that commemorate the Roma and Sinti genocide on 27 January are: Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Ireland,Italy, Latvia, Monaco, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey and the United States.

36 The nine states that commemorate the Roma and Sinti genocide on other dates are: Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Latvia, Norway, Poland, Serbia, Slovakia and the United States.

In their responses, participating States demonstrated their active engagement with communities, relevant organizations and other institutions that shape and participate in commemorative events. Victims’ and survivors’ organizations take part in such events in 24 participating states,38 Jewish communities in 30 states,39 Roma and Sinti communities in 15 States,40 while other religious groups take part in commemorations in 14 participating states.41 Civil society organizations are involved in commemorations in 26 states,42 while academic and research institutions take part in such events in 23 states.43 Moreover, 15 participating states engage other actors in their commemorative activities, including cultural and educational institutions, local authorities and diplomatic missions (Graph 7).44

38 The 24 states where victims’ and survivors’ organizations take part in commemorative events are: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland, Ukraine and the United States.

39 The 30 states where Jewish communities take part in commemorative events are: Albania, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Moldova, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine and the United States.

41 The 14 states where other religious groups take part in commemorative events are: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Finland, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Latvia, Italy, Poland, Romania, Ukraine and the United States.

42 The 26 states where civil society organizations take part in commemorative events are: Albania, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Latvia, Italy, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Moldova, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, Turkey, Ukraine and the United States.

43 The 23 states where academic and research institutions take part in commemorative events are: Albania, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Greece, Latvia, Italy, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Moldova, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Switzerland, Turkey and the United States.

Seventeen participating States indicated that they provide funds for civil society organizations to conduct commemorative activities (Graph 8).45 For more information about funding distribution schemes, please refer to the country overviews. A table listing states that provide funds for civil society organizations and involve them in commemorative events can be found in Annex 1.

In addition to the official and non-official commemorations held by state authorities and commemorations linked to a specific date, OSCE participating States also reported other annually recurring activities to commemorate those who were persecuted and exterminated during World War II. Fifteen participating States reported having other annually recurring activities to commemorate Jewish victims,46 four hold such activities to remember Roma and Sinti victims,47 and five do so to commemorate other victims groups persecuted under National Socialism (Graph 9).48 Moreover, Bulgaria, Canada and Latvia observe a Day of Remembrance of the Crimes Committed by National Socialism, Communism and other Totalitarian Regimes and the Memory of their Victims (also known as Black Ribbon Day) on 23 August.

47 The four states that hold other annually recurring activities to commemorate victims of the Roma and Sinti genocide are: Austria, Latvia, Poland and the United States.

Country Overviews

[..]

Latvia

Memorial Day: 4 July – Official Commemoration Day of Genocide against the Jews

Established: 1990

Commemorates: Jews killed during the Nazi occupation of Latvia

Since 1990, Latvia has commemorated the Holocaust on 4 July. The Official Commemoration Day of Genocide against the Jews recalls the burning of the Choral Synagogue in Riga on 4 July 1941 and commemorates the Jews killed during the Nazi occupation of Latvia.

Commemorative activities take place at memorial sites. The ceremonies are linked to public or educational events that emphasize the need for tolerance and the risks of intolerance, racism and xenophobia fuelled and supported by state authorities, as occurred in Nazi Germany. The events are attended by the President, the Prime Minister, cabinet ministers, members of parliament, the Mayor of Riga and foreign diplomats. Victims’ and survivors’ associations, the Jewish community, other religious groups, civil society, and academic and research institutions are involved in shaping the content of the events and also participate in them.

Furthermore, on 27 January, Latvia marks International Holocaust Remembrance Day. Events are held at different locations each year and include educational activities linked to political events. These special events are organized through co-operation between the Latvian government, civil society and the Jewish community. For example, in 2017 a commemorative ceremony took place at the memorial in the Bikernieki forest in Riga – the site of the largest mass killings in Latvia, where around 36,000 people were murdered between 1941 and 1944, including 6,000-7,000 Latvian Jews, 13,000 Jews from Germany, Austria and the Czech Republic, and political prisoners, members of resistance groups and Soviet prisoners of war.

The Roma and Sinti genocide is commemorated each year as part of events held on 27 January. It is also commemorated on 8 May – the Commemoration Day of Victims of World War II. Moreover, the Latvian Roma community commemorates the Roma genocide on 8 April, on International Roma Day. Finally, other victim groups of National Socialism are also commemorated on 8 May, which remembers the suffering of the Latvian people during World War II. The day is marked with a ceremony at the Brother Cemetery in Riga. The ceremony involves wreath laying and is attended by the President, the Prime minister and the Minister of Foreign Affairs, along with other high-level government officials. Since 2009, Latvia has commemorated 23 August as the European Day of Remembrance for Victims of Stalinism and Nazism (Black Ribbon Day), with activities held at memorial sites.

[..]

Chapter II: Education and Research

Overview

Of the 57 OSCE participating States, 35 responded to this part of the ODIHR questionnaire.50 The responses suggest that the Holocaust, the extermination and persecution of Roma and Sinti and crimes committed against other groups under National Socialism are widely researched throughout the OSCE region. Of the 35 states that responded, 27 indicated that the Holocaust is a subject of research in academic institutions in their country,51 while the extermination and persecution of Roma and Sinti is researched in 16 participating States.52 The crimes committed against other victim groups under National Socialism are researched in 17 states (Graph 1).53 More information on the institutions that conduct such research can be found in Annex 4.

50 The 35 states that responded to the education and research section of the questionnaire are: Albania, Andorra, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Greece, the Holy See, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Moldova, Monaco, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine and the United States.

51 The 27 states where the Holocaust is a subject of academic research are: Albania, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Moldova, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey and the United States.

52 The 16 states where the extermination and persecution of Roma and Sinti is researched are: Austria, Bulgaria, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Sweden and the United States.

53 The 17 states where crimes committed against other victims groups are researched are: Austria, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Moldova, Norway, Poland, Serbia, Slovakia, Sweden and the United States.

The data received demonstrate the prevalence of teaching on these subjects within national curricula. In particular, 22 OSCE participating States noted that the Holocaust is taught in primary schools.54 Almost all those responding (34 out of 35 states) said that the Holocaust features in curricula for secondary and upper-secondary schools,55 with the only exception being the Holy See. Moreover, in 24 participating States the Holocaust is also taught at the college and university level(Graph 2).56

54 The 22 states where the Holocaust is taught in primary schools are: Albania, Andorra, Austria, Azerbaijan, Canada, Denmark, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Monaco, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia and the United States.

55 The 34 states where the Holocaust is taught in secondary and upper-secondary schools are: Albania, Andorra, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Moldova, Monaco, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine and the United States.

56 The 24 states where the Holocaust is taught in colleges and universities are: Albania, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bulgaria, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Norway, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Switzerland, Turkey and the United States.

Teaching also occurs in the OSCE region on the Roma and Sinti genocide, with 17 participating States indicating that this topic is covered in primary schools.57 Additionally, 25 participating States stated that the topic is taught at the secondary and upper-secondary levels,58 while 20 participating States teach about the Roma and Sinti genocide in colleges and universities (Graph 3).59

57 The 17 states where primary schools teach about the Roma and Sinti genocide are: Austria, Canada, Denmark, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Monaco, Norway, Poland, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia and the United States

58 The 25 states where secondary and upper-secondary schools teach about the Roma and Sinti genocide are: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Denmark, Canada, Finland, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Moldova, Monaco, Norway, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland and the United States.

59 The 20 states where colleges and universities teach about the Roma and Sinti genocide are: Austria, Bulgaria, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Norway, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Switzerland and the United States.

Information on crimes committed against other victim groups under National Socialism is taught in primary schools in 17 participating States,60 in secondary and upper-secondary schools in 23 participating States,61 and in colleges and universities in 17 states (Graph 4).62

60 The 17 states where primary schools teach about crimes committed against other victim groups are: Austria, Canada, Denmark, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Luxembourg, Monaco, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia and the United States.

61 The 23 states where secondary and upper-secondary schools teach about crimes committed against other victim groups are: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Denmark, Canada, Finland, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Luxembourg, Malta, Moldova, Monaco, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden and the United States.

62 The 17 states where colleges and universities teach about crimes committed against other victim groups are: Austria, Bulgaria, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Luxembourg, Malta, Norway, Slovakia, Slovenia and the United States.

In the context of the Holocaust, teacher training aims to equip educators with the skills and knowledge to teach and raise awareness about the Holocaust. Participating States’ responses reveal that these topics feature widely in teacher training throughout the OSCE area. When asked about the availability of such training, 29 participating States reported training teachers to teach about the Holocaust,63 19 states – to teach about Roma and Sinti extermination and persecution,64 and 17 states – to teach about the crimes committed against other victim groups (Graph 5).65

63 The 29 states where teachers are trained to teach about the Holocaust are: Albania, Andorra, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Moldova, Monaco, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey and the United States.

64 The 19 states where teachers are trained to teach about the Roma and Sinti genocide are: Austria, Bulgaria, Canada, Denmark, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Monaco, Norway, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden and the United States.

65 The 17 states where teachers are trained to teach about the crimes committed against other victim groups are: Austria, Canada, Denmark, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Moldova, Monaco, Norway, Poland, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden and the United States.

Participating States’ responses indicate that these topics are prevalent in textbooks across the OSCE region. As such, information on the Holocaust is present in textbooks in 30 participating States,66 the extermination and persecution of Roma and Sinti is covered in textbooks in 22 participating States,67 while textbooks in 23 states contain information on crimes committed against other victim groups under National Socialism.68

66 The 30 states where information about the Holocaust is present in textbooks are: Albania, Andorra, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Moldova, Monaco, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey and the United States. Norway does not have an official record of the content of textbooks, but given that the Holocaust is taught in the country, it is counted in these statistics.

68 The 23 states where information about crimes committed against other victim groups is present in textbooks are: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Finland, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Moldova, Monaco, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden and the United States. Norway does not have an official record of the content of textbooks, but given that the crimes against other victim groups under National Socialism is taught in the country, it is counted in these statistics.

Finally, 18 participating States reported that extracurricular activities are carried out in schools to promote awareness and teaching about the Holocaust, the extermination and persecution of Roma and Sinti and crimes committed against other victim groups under National Socialism.69 For more detailed information on Holocaust education in each participating State, please consult the country overviews and Annex 2.

Country Overviews

[..]

Latvia

The Holocaust, the extermination and persecution of Roma and Sinti and crimes committed against other victim groups under National Socialism are subjects of research in academic institutions in Latvia. In 1998, the President of Latvia established the Commission of the Historians of Latvia to research crimes against humanity committed in the territory of Latvia during successive occupations. A sub-commission was also established to deal specifically with the Holocaust. The University of Latvia’s Center for Judaic Studies also conducts research on the Holocaust. The Roma cultural centre has conducted research into the Roma genocide as part of a project aimed at breaking down stereotypes and fostering dialogue. There is acknowledgement in Latvia that more detailed and deeper research should be undertaken on the subject of the Roma genocide in Nazi-occupied Latvia.

The Holocaust, the extermination and persecution of Roma and Sinti and crimes committed against other victim groups are studied at the primary, secondary and upper secondary, college and university levels. These topics form part of the mandatory history curriculum, approved and adopted by cabinet ministries. The Holocaust is also taught as part of other subjects, including the history of culture, social studies, civics and politics. The Holocaust and crimes committed against other victim groups are covered in textbooks.

Since 2001, the Holocaust and anti-Semitism have been addressed as part of in-service training for teachers, developed with guidance from historians and social science experts. Teachers participate in training about the Holocaust, the extermination and persecution of Roma and Sinti and crimes committed against other victim groups. In co-operation with Yad Vashem, the History Teacher’s Association of Latvia organizes seminars on Holocaust education for teachers. The Ministry of Education and Science supports teachers’ participation in the Yad Vashem International School for Holocaust Studies. Information about the Roma genocide is included in a teacher’s guide on the inclusion of Roma pupils. Lastly, in 2015 research published on the Holocaust in the town of Jelgava, where prior to World War II Jews formed the largest minority, resulted in the production of a DVD for use as an aid when teaching about the Holocaust.

[..]

Chapter III: Memorial Sites

Of the 36 OSCE participating States that responded to ODIHR’s questionnaire, 33 answered the section on memorial sites.72 The data indicate that most states have at least one memorial site dedicated to the Holocaust, with ten of the 33 indicating that they do not have any memorial sites (Graph 1).73 As such, 23 OSCE participating States confirmed that they have created memorial sites dedicated to the victims of National Socialism,74 representing over two thirds of those that responded to the survey. This highlights the continuing determination throughout the OSCE region to support Holocaust education and commemoration through the creation of dedicated memorial sites.

72 The 33 states that responded to the section on memorial sites are: Albania, Andorra, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Greece, the Holy See, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Moldova, Monaco, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey and the United States. The Netherlands and Ukraine failed to complete this section of the questionnaire and are excluded from consideration in this figure. Azerbaijan provided information unconnected to memorial sites dedicated to the victims of National Socialism, and as such was categorized as not having completed this section.

74 The 23 states with memorial sites for victims of National Socialism are: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Monaco, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Switzerland and the United States.

Graph 2 highlights that 21 states depend on the provision of state funding for these sites,75 while nine states are solely dependent on this type of funding due to the absence of private funding for any memorial sites.76 Only Slovenia and Switzerland indicate that their memorial sites rely exclusively on private funding, including the Swiss Memorial for Refugees during World War II. Of the 21 states with state-funded memorial sites, 12 also have privately-funded sites for commemorating the victims of this period.77 This highlights the continuing relevance of private funding within Holocaust education and commemoration, while national authorities remain the main source of funding for memorial sites dedicated to the victims of National Socialism.

75 The 21 states that provide state funding for memorial sites are: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Monaco, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia and the United States.

77 The 12 states with both state and privately-funded memorial sites are: Austria, Canada, Denmark, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Latvia, Norway, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia and the United States

Of those who responded to the survey, the majority of states (22) have at least one memorial site dedicated to Jewish victims of the Holocaust (Graph 3).78 Portugal is the only state with a memorial site that does not specifically commemorate Jewish victims of the Holocaust, but rather pays respects to refugees, including Jewish refugees.79 Further information on memorial sites dedicated to Jewish Holocaust victims can be found in Annex 3.

78 The 22 states with at least one memorial site dedicated to Jewish Holocaust victims are: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Monaco, Norway, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Switzerland and the United States

Survey responses also highlighted the prevalence of state funding for memorial sites dedicated to Jewish victims of the Holocaust, with eight states solely dependent on state funding for these memorial sites.80 Overall, 21 states hold at least one state-funded memorial site or museum for Jewish victims.81 A sizeable number of states (13) also rely on private funding for memorial sites commemorating Jewish victims of the Holocaust,82 although only two states – Slovenia and Switzerland – depend exclusively on private funding for these memorial sites (Graph 4).

81 The 21 states with at least one state-funded memorial site for Jewish Holocaust victims are: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Monaco, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia and the United States.

82 The 13 states with privately-funded memorial sites for Jewish Holocaust victims are: Austria, Canada, Denmark, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Latvia, Norway, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Switzerland and the United States.

Graph 5 indicates that Roma and Sinti victims are commemorated at memorial sites throughout the OSCE region, with ten OSCE participating States indicating that they have memorial sites for victims from this community (more information on these sites can be found in Annex 3).83 This highlights the continuing determination across the OSCE region to raise awareness of the Roma and Sinti genocide, such as that demonstrated by a recent initiative in Moldova to build a monument to Roma genocide victims.84

83 The ten states with memorial sites for Roma and Sinti victims are: Austria, Belgium, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia and the United States.

The majority of these memorials are state-funded (in nine states),85 except two privately-funded memorials in Hungary and Serbia (Graph 6). Further details can be found on memorial sites and their funding in Annex 3.

Only seven states indicated that they have memorial sites for other victim groups persecuted under National Socialism (Graph 7).86 In most cases, these memorial sites are unique to the national context of those states. This is highlighted by the case of Slovakia, where the “Museum of the Slovak National Uprising” commemorates all those who were persecuted and exterminated during World War II.

86 The seven states with memorial sites for other victim groups are: Austria, Germany, Latvia, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia and the United States.

The majority of memorial sites to commemorate other victim groups are state-funded (Graph 8). In Austria, for example, the state has funded multiple memorial sites, ranging from a monument for victims of political resistance to a memorial site for the victims of the Nazi “euthanasia” programme. Only the United States, Latvia and Austria indicate that they have privately-funded memorial sites for other victim groups of the Holocaust in addition to their state-funded sites.

The responses to this section of the questionnaire highlight a widespread recognition of the importance of memorial sites in educating people about the Holocaust, the extermination and persecution of Roma and Sinti and crimes committed against other victim groups under National Socialism. Nevertheless, there is still work to be done to ensure that people throughout the OSCE region have the opportunity to learn about and commemorate the victims of the Holocaust. OSCE participating States’ complete responses to this section of the questionnaire on memorial sites can be found in Annex 3.

[..]

Annexes

Annex 1. Civil society participation in commemorative events and availability of state funding for civil society-organized events

[..]

Latvia. Participation YES Funds NO RESPONSE

[..]

Annex 2. Overview of teaching and teacher training about the Holocaust

[..]

Latvia

Holocaust

Primary levelSecondary and upper-secondary levelCollege and universityTeacher training
YesYesYesYes

Roma and Sinti Genocide

Primary levelSecondary and upper-secondary levelCollege and universityTeacher training
YesYesYesYes

Crimes committed against other victim groups

Primary levelSecondary and upper-secondary levelCollege and universityTeacher training
YesYesYesYes

[..]

Annex 3. State and privately-funded memorial sites and museums in the OSCE region

[..]

CountryState-funded Museums or Memorial SitesPrivately-funded Museums or Memorial Sites
LatviaFor Jewish and other victim groups:
No further details provided
For Jewish and other victim groups:
No further details provided

[..]

Annex 4. Institutions conducting research on the Holocaust, the extermination and persecution of Roma and Sinti and crimes committed against other victim groups under National Socialism

[..]

Latvia

On the Holocaust:

  • Commission of Historians of Latvia.
  • University of Latvia, Center for Judaic Studies.

On the Roma and Sinti genocide:

  • Roma Cultural Center

[..]

Annex 6. Overview of the status of participating States’ submissions in response to the ODIHR questionnaire

[..]

CountryStatus of submission
LatviaResponse

[..]


Document data: 26.01.2018 ISBN 978 92 9234 969 1 Link: https://www.osce.org/odihr/hmd2018?download=true

Publisher’s notes: not reproducing a footnote means Latvia is not mentioned there

Tagged: Tags