ANOTHER 17 Slovaks will be awarded the title Righteous among the Nations, which is given to individuals who helped save the lives of Jews before and during World War II. The awards are given by Israel and Yad Vashem, the Jerusalem-based memorial to the victims of the Holocaust, and will be presented on February 1 in the historical building of the Slovak parliament by Alexander Ben-Zvi, the Israeli Ambassador to Slovakia, the TASR newswire reported.
“While others were watching with fear or disregarded how their Jewish neighbours were disappearing from the houses next to theirs, these people [the award recipients] were building hiding places for them, sharing food with them and bringing them solace every day,” said Ben-Zvi, as quoted by TASR, adding that while the majority was silent, these particular people saved their lives.
He added that the acts of the people receiving recognition are part of Slovakia’s cultural heritage that must be cherished and that it “sends a message of goodness, humanity and bravery”.
“Righteous among the Nations shows us that salvation is possible even in the worst times,” TASR quoted the ambassador.
The Slovaks receiving the awards will also have their names inscribed on the Wall of Honour in the Garden of the Righteous at Yad Vashem. Since the inception of the awards 540 Slovak citizens have been inscribed on the Wall of Honour.
23. Jan 2012 at 0:00