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ITF Chair Attends Babi Yar Commemoration in Ukraine


ITF Chair Ambassador Karel de Beer attended the commemoration ceremony marking the 70th anniversary of the Babi Yar massacres in Ukraine on 3 October 2011.

Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych led the tribute to the 33,771 Jews killed in the Babi Yar ravine outside Kiev on September 29-30, 1941.

A delegation of top officials led by Yanukovych, Prime Minister Mykola Azarov, and Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman placed crimson roses and a wreath at the memorial and honored the memory of the victims with a minute of silence.  International parliamentarians and diplomats from around the world also attended the ceremony.

"It is difficult to fully comprehend the events that occurred in Babi Yar. It is difficult to find the words to express all the depth of our condolences and sorrow," Yanukovych stated in his comments.

ITF Chair Ambassador de Beer also delivered a speech at the First Conference of Ukrainian Alumni of the International School for Holocaust Studies in Yad Vashem on Tuesday, 4 October in Kiev.