TASS, May 7. A delegation of young Russians has taken part in the Auschwitz March of the Living to commemorate the tragedy of the Jewish people during World War II and to pay tribute to the Red Army as the liberator of Europe and dozens of thousands of inmates of Nazi death camps, the press service of the Federation of the Jewish Communities of Russia [FJCR] said on Sunday.
The FJCR supported the trip of the delegation.
"We want the world around us to understand that it’s important to lead a different life and that the future depends on each of us, on the things we do, on our obligations, on how we treat our near and dear ones," Russia’s chief rabbi Berl Lazar said in a statement for the media.
"If everyone who has been here admits that his or her decisions can change everything for the better, then we look into the future with confidence and say with assuredness no such things will ever happen again," he said.
FJCR President Alexander Boroda sent a welcome to participants in the annual march.
"When someone gets to the territory of that horrible place, it is important for us to feel our duty and commemorate the 6 million victims of Nazism," he said. "In addition, it’s worthwhile remembering that freedom was brought to Auschwitz by the Soviet Army, which made a huge contribution to the great victory."
"On the eve of May 9, we must recall the soldiers who saved our ancestors at the risks of their own lives," Boroda said.
The Auschwitz March of the Living was held for the first time in 1988. For seven years, only the people of Jewish origin could take part in it.
In 1995, in the year when humankind celebrated the 50th anniversary since the end of WW II, the followers of all the religions joined their ranks at the march for the first time. In 2005, the action brought together the biggest-ever number of participants, or 20,000.
The Nazis founded the Auschwitz Birkenay death camp in 1940, or nine months after their invasion of Poland. Various assessments put the number of people killed there at 1 mln to 4 mln people there from 1940 through 1945. Most of those who died there were of Jewish origin.
Poles, Soviet prisoners of war and Roma were also present among the victims.