Redbridge remembers genocide victims on Holocaust Memorial Day
- Credit: Archant
A special ceremony was held in today to remember the lives of the millions who died in the Holocaust and other atrocities around the world.
The event, which marked Holocaust Memorial Day was held at Valentines Park, Cranbrook Road Ilford, and attended by hundreds of people from every section of the community.
Representatives from the council, the borough’s schools, faith groups and residents joined together for the 17th year in the park’s Holocaust Memorial Garden to mark the anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau.
The Redbridge Mayor’s chaplain Mankamal Singh recited an extract from moving poem, The Creed by Holocaust survivor Alexander Kimel: “When man will stop killing man in the name of God.
“And nation will not lift weapon against nation, when it will happen I do not know but despite all the signs to the contrary, in the dawn of a better world I do believe.”
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The service, opened by the mayor Cllr Gurdial Bhamra, featured readings from Redbridge pupils and speeches by council leader Cllr Jas Athwal, Rabbi Sufrin of Chabad Lubavitch, Rabbi Hyman, Ilford Synagogue and The Rev Canon Marie Segal from St Andrew’s Church.
Wreaths were laid in the memorial garden and pupils concluded the ceremony with a reading of the Statement of Commitment – a series of pledges that remind us to remember the Holocaust and genocides in Rwanda, Bosnia, Cambodia, Kosovo and Darfur.
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Cllr Athwal said: “We have an obligation to ensure that we keep alive the memory both of those who survived the Holocaust and other genocides and those who did not. This annual commemoration provides an opportunity to learn and reflect on these memories.
“Sadly, anti-semitism and other forms of hate continue today and by failing to learn the lessons of the past, extremist voices are growing across Europe and the world.
“On Holocaust Memorial Day everyone should stand together with genocide survivors and those who have been the victim of identity-based hate, to support them to believe that their life can go on.”