In the second day of his state visit to Israel, President Iohannis visited the Yad Vashem memorial to the victims of the Holocaust and announced his support for opening a Holocaust and Jewish people memorial in Bucharest, an idea he will discuss with the Romanian government.
“Rejecting the anti-Semitism, xenophobia, racial hatred, discrimination and intolerance starts with sound knowledge of historical realities that resulted in such atrocities. Tolerance and respect for fellow humans is sown at young ages, and school has a fundamental role in this case. Considering these things, as President of Romania I will plead for building such a museum in Bucharest. I am fully determined to support the opening of a museum of Jewish people and Holocaust in Romania. I will discuss with the Government in order to have a concrete plan as soon as possible,” the President declared.
“The importance and usefulness of a museum of the stance and reputation of Yad Vashem consists in automatically raising questions about how the perpetration of such atrocities was possible, by whom, and especially why,” he asserted.
He also stressed the possible showcasing of Romanian rescuers during the Holocaust, as a form of responsibility and gratitude.
The President confessed that his visit to Yad Vashem was a touching and emotional experience.
He reminded that Romania takes over the Chairmanship of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance on Tuesday, in a ceremony in Berlin.
The President was accompanied by his wife Carmen Iohannis and by the official delegation including Education Minister Adrian Curaj and Foreign Minister Lazar Comanescu. He participated in a ceremony to rekindle the eternal flame in the Hall of Remembrance, where he laid a wreath and observe a moment of silence.
Iohannis had already laid a wreath at the tomb of Theodor Herzl.
Romanian President, wife meet Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Jerusalem Theophilos III
Klaus Iohannis and wife Carmen met on Monday with Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Jerusalem Theophilos III, with whom they visited the Church of the Holy Sepulchre.
The Patriarch stated at the beginning of the meeting that President Iohannis is a “peacemaker” and reminded that in 2014 former head of the Romanian state Traian Basescu had visited the Greek-Orthodox Patriarchate of Jerusalem.
Klaus Iohannis received from the Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Jerusalem a decoration, and his wife Carmen a cross pendant and a chain. President Iohannis offered Patriarch Theophilos III a philatelic postage set.
The presidential couple knelt at the “Stone of the Anointing” and then entered the Holy Sepulcher, the Chapel of the Holy Cross, the Altar of Calvary and the Chapel of Saint Helena.
President Iohannis began on Sunday a state visit to Israel and Palestine which will end o