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Inauguration of Memorial Plaque from Turkey in Memory of Bergen-Belsen Victims


A ceremony was held on 9 December 2012 to inaugurate a memorial plaque dedicated to the memory of eight Turkish Jewish and non-Jewish citizens who were victims of the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp.

Perla Behar-Behar, Iso Cory, Jacques Nahoum, Dr. Jakob Jekutiel Neubauer, Max Neumann, Marco Ojalvo, Elyo Sarfati, and Garabed Tachdijan were all killed at Bergen-Belsen in Lower Saxony during World War II.  A memorial plate, prepared by the Turkish Consulate General in Hannover, was inaugurated at the concentration camp grounds with a ceremony on Sunday, 9 December 2012.

The opening ceremony was attended by 80 people including the Turkish Ambassador to Germany, Hüseyin Avni Karslıoğlu, Lower Saxon Parliament's Minister for Social Affairs and Integration Aygül Özkan, several Parliamentary members, Turkish Consul General in Hannover Tunca Özçuhadar, Hannover Jewish Community President Ingrid Wettberg, the representative of Turkish Jewish Community Daniel Altaras, and representatives of non-governmental organization and press.

The ceremony started with 20-minute screening of the documentary "Turkish Passport." Ambassador Hüseyin Avni Karslıoğlu, Turkish Jewish Community representative Daniel Altaras and Minister Aygül Özkan addressed the participants. In their speeches they condemned antisemitism, racism and all forms of discrimination and underlined the importance of democracy, equality and living in mutual respect. Turkish Jewish Community representative Daniel Altaras indicated that the memorial represents the memory of the victims and symbolizes sensitivity to Holocaust.

Following the speeches, under the heavy snow, the participants set off to the site where the memorial plate was placed. The Turkish Ambassador, the Representative of the Turkish Jewish Community, and the President of the Liberal Jewish Association laid a wreath. The ceremony ended with prayers for all the victims who lost their lives at the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp.