About the Holocaust and the United Nations Outreach Programme
Rejecting any denial of the Holocaust as a historical event, either in full or in part, the General Assembly adopted a resolution (A/RES/60/7) by consensus condemning “without reserve” all manifestations of religious intolerance, incitement, harassment or violence against persons or communities based on ethnic origin or religious belief, whenever they occur.
The resolution declared that the United Nations would designate 27 January — the anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz death camp — as an annual International Day of Commemoration to honour the victims of the Holocaust, and urged Member States to develop educational programmes to instill the memory of the tragedy in future generations to prevent genocide from occurring again. It requested the United Nations Secretary-General to establish an outreach programme on the “Holocaust and the United Nations”, as well as institute measures to mobilize civil society for Holocaust remembrance and education, in order to help prevent future acts of genocide.
The Holocaust was a turning point in history, which prompted the world to say “never again”. The significance of resolution A/RES/60/7 is that it calls for a remembrance of past crimes with an eye towards preventing them in the future.
The 2012 observance of the International Day of Commemoration in memory of the victims of the Holocaust will focus on the theme “Children and the Holocaust”. The United Nations will remember the one-and-a-half million Jewish children who perished in the Holocaust, together with the thousands of Roma and Sinti children, the disabled and others, who suffered and died at the hands of the Nazis and their collaborators. Some children managed to survive in hiding, others fled to safe havens before it was too late, while many others suffered medical experiments or were sent to the gas chambers immediately upon arriving at the death camps. Highlighting the impact of mass violence on children, this theme has important implications for the 21st century.