European Commission Vice-President Margaritis Schinas visited the Jewish Museum of Thessaloniki on October 10th 2021.
Mr. David Saltiel, the President of the Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece (KIS) and of the Jewish Community of Thessaloniki, welcomed and accompanied Mr. Schinas to the tour of the Jewish Museum of Thessaloniki.
During the visit, Vice-President Schinas reassured Jewish communities of Europe that the European Union will support them in the face of modern threats.
“In modern European Greece, but also in democratic Thessaloniki, there is no room for fascism and Nazism. Those who make the mistake of insisting on these practices should know that history will remind them of what happened,” he stated, sending a clear message that Thessaloniki is a European metropolis in which there is no room for rhetorical hatred.
Thessaloniki will always remain an outward-looking European metropolis of democracy, peaceful coexistence, and dialogue. “A European metropolis where raiding battalions, rhetoric and symbols of hatred do not fit.”
Vice-President Schinas’ visit to Thessaloniki and the Jewish Museum is of particular importance, having taken place just few days after the presentation of the EU’s first strategy on combating antisemitism and preserving Jewish life, which was emphasized by the European Commission Vice-President.
“As Vice President, I want to assure the Jewish communities in Europe that the EU will not leave them unprotected from the many modern threats that are overshadowing their lives today. We will guarantee their safety, we will strengthen their education and culture, we will do everything to preserve the historical memory of the Holocaust, especially now that the last survivors are leaving us without their personal stories,” he underlined.
For his part, KIS President Saltiel expressed the appreciation of world Jewry for the remarkable work in support of Europe’s Jewish communities, achieved by the Vice-President Schinas. “It is our duty to promote knowledge and research, educate the young people so that they are immune to neo-Nazi ideologies, because these ideas abolish human rights and the very values of humanism”.
“We must continue our fight against fascism, racism and antisemitism. This Museum is a pillar of knowledge. The schools that visit it learn about the history of the Holocaust, while educational trips to the Museum of Auschwitz are organized so that the youngsters realize the magnitude of the Holocaust. As years go by and the survivors pass away, the duty to preserve memory and fight antisemitism passes on to us”, Saltiel stressed.
The Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece is the country’s EJC affiliate