2022-01-27 10:16:00

Holocaust Remembrance Day reinstated at Russian schools

Moscow, January 27, Interfax - Russian schools will again mark Holocaust Remembrance Day, the Russian Jewish Congress (RJC) told Interfax on the eve of this international memorial date.

"An order signed by Russian First Deputy Education Minister Alexander Bugayev (which is available to the Russian Jewish Congress) makes changes to the educational schedule for the 2021/2022 school year. According to the document, the day of liberation of the largest death camp Auschwitz-Birkenau (Oswiecim) by the Red Army - Holocaust Remembrance Day, which is marked on January 27, is returned to the educational plan," the RJC press service said.

The Holocaust Remembrance Day has been removed from the calendar of educational events for the current school year. The issue was raised at the section on education at the Let's Protect the Future 3rd Moscow international conference on combating xenophobia, anti-Semitism and racism on November 22-23, 2021 organized by the RJC. Following the discussion, members of the RJC public council Alexander Asmolov and Nikolay Svanidze addressed the reinstatement of this date to the educational calendar already at a meeting the Presidential Human Rights Council on December 9.

Earlier, RJC President Yury Kanner sent an official letter to Russian Education Minister Sergey Kravtsov asking him to return International Holocaust Remembrance Day to the educational calendar. "The Holocaust cannot be dropped from [the educational plan] at schools just as the victory of the Red Army and its allies over Nazism cannot be separated from the history of the Jewish people," Kanner said.

The RJC noted that Holocaust history lessons in Russian schools are traditionally an important part of Holocaust Remembrance Week events. The Holocaust Memorial Week is underway in Russia for the eighth time from January 17 to February 4, 2022. The RJC supported by the Moscow Department of National Policy and Interregional Relations, the Russian Federal Agency for Ethnic Affairs, and the Holocaust Center organized the memorial events. In 2022, more than 1,000 events of the Remembrance Week are being held in 80 Russian regions.

The International Holocaust Remembrance Day was previously removed from the calendar of educational events for 2019/2020, but then the ministry attributed this to a technical error, which was shortly corrected. "The error has been corrected this time as well. We hope it won't happen again," the RJC press office said.