IHRA 2020 declaration discusses Holocaust, modern antisemitism

The IHRA promised that Holocaust victims and survivors will not be forgotten.

The site of the former Nazi German concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz II-Birkenau (photo credit: REUTERS/KACPER PEMPEL)
The site of the former Nazi German concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz II-Birkenau
High Governmental Representatives of the Member Countries of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) adopted its 2020 ministerial declaration on Sunday ahead of the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz.
"We promise to never forget those who resisted the Nazis and those who protected or rescued their persecuted fellow human beings. Today, the world still faces genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity and continued threats to pluralistic, democratic and inclusive societies," IHRA wrote in the introduction to the declaration.

The declaration starts with the IHRA promising that Holocaust victims and survivors will not be forgotten, and emphasizing that keeping their memories alive is "the responsibility not only of governments but of societies as a whole."
IHRA also makes a point in the declaration of acknowledging the genocide of the Roma and the "concern that the neglect of this genocide has contributed to the prejudice and discrimination that many Roma communities still experience today."
The Nazis killed half a million Roma people during the genocide.
Those who resisted the Nazis and the Righteous among the Nations are also recognized in the declaration as well as "others who protected or sought to rescue those who were in danger."
Beyond World War II, IHRA expressed concerns about the growing amounts of antisemitism across the globe.
The member states signed to the agreement accepted the responsibility to "continue working together to counter Holocaust denial and distortion, antisemitism, and all forms of racism and discrimination that undermine fundamental democratic principles." They also pledged to not only preserve the memory of the Holocaust, the genocide of the Roma and other victims of Nazi persecution, but also to promote educational programs about these people.
Furthermore, they committed to commending other governments and societies that "commemorate the Holocaust and share good practices" as well as encouraging "all counties and societies to address their respective pasts by dealing openly and accurately with the historical record."
“We welcome this powerful declaration,” Gideon Taylor who represented the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany (Claims Conference) and the World Jewish Restitution Organization (WJRO) at the gathering said in a statement from WJRO. 
“Seventy-five years after the liberation of Auschwitz, the international community has a limited window of opportunity to help survivors live out the remainder of their lives with dignity, and to secure justice for Holocaust victims whose property was wrongfully taken from them by the Nazis, their allies, and their collaborators,” Taylor added.
This new declaration comes days before more than 40 foreign leaders convene in Jerusalem for the Fifth World Holocaust Forum at Yad Vashem. Additionally, Italy adopted the IHRA definition of antisemitism on Sunday.
Rossella Tercatin contributed to this report.