Bucharest General Mayor Firea voices support for Holocaust and Jewish history museum

Bucharest City General Mayor Gabriela Firea on Thursday voiced support for the establishment in the city of a museum of Holocaust and Jewish history, “which will prove to the world that Romanians do not forget their history.”

The Bucharest General City Hall says in a press statement that this was the conclusion after Mayor Firea’s meeting with officials of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum of Washington DC – Radu Ioanid, director of the Photographic Research Department and Paul Shapiro – director of the museum’s center for Advanced Holocaust Studies and Dean Thompson, deputy chief of the US Embassy in Bucharest. Alexandru Florian, director of the Elie Wiesel Institute, also attended the meeting.

“We are convinced of the importance this project holds. I support it wholeheartedly, because it will prove that Romanians do not forget their history; the future generations will have to be reminded constantly of the dark moments so that past tragedies will not be repeated. The Holocaust is a dark page in the world’s history, and by creating this museum, Bucharest City will show it is within today and tomorrow’s people’s power to walk forward without forgetting what can no longer be changed: the sufferings of Jewish children, women and men,” Firea is quoted as saying.

In her opinion, a museum will be “a sign of normalcy, understanding of human values, of democracy, and, last but not least, of reparation.”

The statement quotes Thompson as saying a Holocaust museum would be a very strong message that Bucharest recognises its history while not forgetting atrocities; the image of the city as well as of Romania, he said, will have a lot to gain.

Ioanid said the museum in Bucharest would cover some of the atrocious period of the Holocaust and part of the history of the Jewish people.

The Bucharest General City Hall says it will conclude a partnership with the Elie Wiesel National Institute for Holocaust Studies in Romania for the establishment in the city of a museum of the Holocaust and Jewish history, under which it could lease out offices to the institute and the institute will take care of the funds to set up the museum.

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