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Frank-Walter Seinmeier warns of revival of ethnic ideologies | TIME ONLINE


During his visit to the Auschwitz Nazi extermination camp, Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier warned of a resurgence of nationalism and ethnic ideologies. Auschwitz is "a place where we Germans feel the weight of history," said Steinmeier at the memorial, which he visited for the first time to mark the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz. One has to remember "to be prepared in the here and now". "Auschwitz is the sum of ethnic thinking, racial hatred and national frenzy," warned the Federal President.

According to Steinmeier, the acts of Auschwitz oblige to oppose all forms of new anti-Semitism. One should not only talk about the past, but must see it as a permanent responsibility to "defend the beginning, also in our country," he said. This is also the request of the survivors. "The times are different today, the words are different, the deeds are different, but sometimes when we look into this time we have the impression that evil is still there."

Units of the Soviet Red Army reached the former German concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz-Birkenau exactly 75 years ago and freed more than 7,000 prisoners still alive. However, many of them died of hunger, disease and exhaustion within a short period of time. Alone in Auschwitz the National Socialists killed more than a million people, mostly Jews. They murdered around six million people of Jewish faith across Europe.


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