22:05 GMT01 December 2020
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    German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Friday visited a Holocaust memorial in the former Nazi-run Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp in Poland for the first time in her 14 years as the nation's leader. Merkel is now the third German chancellor in history to visit the camp.

    Angela Merkel on Friday, during a visit with Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki to the Auschwitz concentration camp in southern Poland, warned against the “dangerous historical revisionism” facing liberal democracy.

    “We are witnessing and experiencing an attack on the fundamental values of liberal democracy. And a very dangerous historical revisionism that serves a hostility that is directed against specific groups,” said Merkel, according to The New York Times.

    The chancellor noted that historical fact must be stated in an “unequivocal manner”, as the world has in recent years experienced an “alarming level of racism, increasing intolerance, a wave of hate crimes”.

    “Auschwitz was a German death camp, run by Germans. We Germans owe it to the victims and we owe it to ourselves to keep alive the memory of the crimes committed, to identify the perpetrators and to commemorate the victims in a dignified manner. This is not open to negotiation. It is an integral part and will forever be an integral part of our identity,” Merkel said, according to Nytimes.com.

    Merkel’s visit to the Auschwitz-Birkenau death camp, where over 1.1 million were brutally executed during World War II, comes ahead of the 75th anniversary of the camp’s liberation by the Red Army of the former Soviet Union on January 27, 1945. The camp's location is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

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    Tags:
    history, Nazis, Anti-Semitism, Poland, Auschwitz, holocaust, Angela Merkel
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