In November 2005, the United Nations General Assembly declared January 27, the day of liberation of the Auschwitz-Birkenau Nazi concentration camp, as International Day of Commemoration in Memory of the Victims of the Holocaust. This day is an additional opportunity to pay tribute to the victims of one of the biggest tragedies in human history, among whom were not only 6 millions of Jews, but also millions of Polish, Gypsy, homosexual, disabled people and Soviet prisoners of war. In addition, it provides one more chance to consolidate and inform people so that those kind of massacres never repeat.
In this regard, the UN Department of Public Information Yerevan Office had initiated several events that took place on from January 27 to February 10.
January 27 // Commemoration at the Memorial for the Victims of Holocaust and Genocide
The UNO/DPI and the Jewish Community in Armenia came to pay tribute to the innocent victims and once again call to fight against discrimination, xenophobia, racism, and extremism.
Rima Varzhapetyan, the President of the “Jewish Community in Armenia” NGO, said that in reality the number of the Jewish victims of Holocaust was much bigger, than the spoken six million. She told that unfortunately the humanity has not learnt lessons, and today hundreds of thousands of people still become victims of discrimination and xenophobia driven activities.
Armineh Haladjian, UNO/DPI Yerevan Officer-in-Charge, presented quotes from the message of the UN Secretary General, beside the wreath laid on behalf of the UN Armenia office. Notwithstanding the cold and snowy day, the participants of the event lit six symbolic candles in memory of the officially mentioned six million Jewish victims of the Holocaust.
January 30 // The topic of Holocaust at the American University of Armenia
Within the Genocide Issues course, the UNO/DPI organized an open lesson dedicated to Nazi propaganda for students of AUA Political Science and International Affairs Program. During the lesson moderated by Armineh Haladjian, Officer-in-Charge of the UNO/DPI Yerevan, the students were introduced to the poster series - “State of Deception: The Power of Nazi Propaganda.” Suren Manukyan, the lecturer of the course and the Vice Director of the Genocide Museum-Institute, was also present at the interactive class, during which the students actively participated in the discussion. At the end of the lesson, the documentary film “The Path to Nazi Genocide” was screened.
January 31 // “Woman in Gold” film screening
The UNO/DPI initiated the BBC produced “Woman in Gold” feature film screening at the small hall of the Moscow Cinema. This is the remarkable true story of one woman's journey to reclaim her heritage and seek justice by retrieving Gustav Klimt's famous painting “Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer I”, which once belonged to her family and was seized by Nazis. In addition to watching the film, the participants of the event had an opportunity to look through the bilingual (English-Russian) poster series “State of Deception: The Power of Nazi Propaganda” exhibited at the lobby of the Cinema.
February 1 – 10 // Posters Exhibition
The posters series “State of Deception: The Power of Nazi Propaganda” in two languages – English and Russian were exhibited in the entrance hall of the National Library of Armenia. The National Library hosts one of the two UN Depository Libraries in Armenia and its readership varies from students to researchers, from official staff of the Government Institutions to general public.