68th Anniversary of the Liberation of Auschwitz
On Sunday, January 27, 2013, a ceremony will be held for the 68th anniversary of the liberation of the German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz. Honorary patronage over the event will be assumed by the President of the Republic of Poland, Bronisław Komorowski.
Up to the moment of the liberation of the camp area by the Red Army, the Nazis murdered approximately 1.1 million people in Auschwitz, mostly Jews, but also Poles, Roma, Soviet prisoners of war and people of other nationalities. Today, the world sees Auschwitz as a symbol of the Shoah and atrocities of World War II. In 2005, the United Nations proclaimed January 27 the International Day of Commemoration in Memory of the Victims of the Holocaust.
As part of this year's celebrations, a new Russian exhibition will open in block 14, prepared by the Central Museum of the Great Patriotic War in Moscow. In July 2012, after several years of discussions and findings, a completely new scenario of the exhibition has been mutual agreed. “This has permitted us to overcome an impasse that has existed since 2005, when for historical reasons, there was no opening of the previous version the exhibition prepared by another Russian institution,” said Piotr M. A. Cywiński, director of the Auschwitz Museum.
The visual symbol of this year's celebration is a picture by a former prisoner, a Polish Jew, Halina Ołomucka, entitled "Liberation." “This image highlights, on the one hand, the joy of the end of the camp ordeal, and yet the unimaginable toll of the camp experiences that the liberated will have to carry with them until the end of their days,” underlined Piotr M. A. Cywiński.
The anniversary celebrations will be attended by former prisoners, as well as representatives of the Polish and Russian governments, diplomatic corps, the clergy of various denominations, community, community of regional and local authorities, as well as invited guests.
Due to the limited number of seats, those wishing to participate in the ceremony, please contact the organisers before January 18, 2013. Celebrations will begin at 12:00 at the site of the former camp of Auschwitz I. The main ceremony commemorating the victims will take place at the Monument to the Victims in Birkenau from 15.00-15.30.
Preliminary Programme of the Celebrations for the 68th Anniversary of the Liberation of the KL Auschwitz. 27th January 2013
12.00 – 13.15 Ceremony at the former camp Auschwitz I
13.30 – 14.15 Opening of the Russian permanent exhibition “Tragedy. Valour. Liberation” (Only the official Polish and Russian delegations. The exhibition will be public after the end of the ceremony)
15.00 – 15.30 Ceremony in commemoration of the victims. Prayer and tribute at the Monument at Birkenau
15.45 - Ceremony at the memorial located at the site of mass graves of Soviet POWs in Birkenau (delegations of the Auschwitz Memorial and the Central Museum of Great Patriotic War)
tel. + 48 33 843 1934 (confirmation of participation)
tel. + 48 33 844 8181 (general information)
Participation in the ceremony does not require accreditation, but we ask that journalists and crews wishing to deploy vans, please contact the Museum press office between 15th and 23rd January 2013 ( / +48 33 844 8145). Organisational and technical details will be announced at a later date on the Museum website.