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Russian FM calls Polish minister's statement on Oswiecim liberation blasphemous

January 22, 2015, 2:34 UTC+3
The Red Army liberated the Auschwitz concentration camp, he said
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© Ilya Pitalev / TASS

BERLIN, January 22. /TASS/. Polish foreign minister’s statement that Ukrainians liberated Nazi concentration camp Oswiecim blasphemous and cynical, as the Soviet Red Army liberated this death camp, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov told TASS on Thursday.

On Wednesday, Polish Foreign Minister Grzegorz Schetyna told Polish radio that the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp in Oswiecim “was liberated by the First Ukrainian Front and Ukrainians.” In his words, “This is Ukrainian soldiers who opened the gates of the death camp.”

“I even cannot comment on the Polish minister’s statement that Ukrainians had liberated Oswiecim. The Soviet Red Army which included Russians, Ukrainians, Chechens, Georgians and Tatars has liberated Oswiecim,” the Russian foreign minister noted. “To try to play with someone’s nationalistic feelings in this situation is absolutely blasphemous and cynical,” he said.

Fascists killed more than one million Jews, Polish intellectuals and Soviet prisoners-of-war at the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp. According to different estimates, from 1.5 to two million of different nationalities, including around 15 thousand Soviet citizens, were assassinated at the concentration camp. More than 200 Soviet soldiers and officers were killed in the battles for liberation of the death camp and a neighbouring town of Oswiecim.

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