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Vatican delegate to UN reflects on Nazi death camps

Archbishop Celestino Migliore, Holy See permanent observer to the United Nations, has participated in the UN General Assembly commemorating the 60th anniversary of the liberation of Nazi concentration camps by allied troops.

Archbishop Migliore said: ""My delegation welcomes this chance to remember the liberation of the Nazi concentration camps, so that humanity not forget the terror of which man is capable; the evils of arrogant political extremism and social engineering."

"Today we contemplate the consequences of intolerance, as we recall all those ... considered unfit for society - the Jews, the Slavonic peoples, the Roma people, the disabled, homosexuals, among others - who were marked for extermination."

"The death camps are also witnesses to an unprecedented plan for the deliberate, systematic extermination of a whole people, the Jewish people... During his visit to Auschwitz in 1979, Pope John Paul the Second stated that we must let the cry of the people martyred there change the world for the better."

"In a century marked by man-made catastrophes, the Nazi death camps are a particularly sobering reminder of 'man's inhumanity to man' and of his capacity for evil. Nevertheless, we should remember that humankind is also capable of great good, of self-sacrifice and altruism," said the archbishop. "In the context of today's commemoration, we need only think of those courageous people from all walks of society, ... recognised as 'Righteous among the Nations'" he added, in a reference to those who helped the Jewish people during the Second World War.

"May all men and women of good will seize this solemn occasion to say "Never again" to such crimes, no matter their political inspiration, so that all nations, as well as this Organization, truly respect the life, liberty and dignity of every human being."

Vatican delegate to UN reflects on Nazi death camps (Independent Catholic New/Vatican Information Service 26/1/05)

Permanent Observer Mission of the Holy See to the United Nations

Address to U.N. on 60th Anniversary of Liberation of Nazi Camps (Zenit 25/1/05)
Holocaust a "Stain on History," Says Vatican (Zenit 25/1/05)
Vatican UN envoy cites brutality of Nazi race ideology (Catholic World News 25/1/05)

27 Jan 2005