ZAGREB, June 28, 2019 – Israel’s Ambassador in Croatia, Ilan Mor, said on Friday he believed the Jewish Community of Zagreb (ŽOZ) would manage to find a solution for the erection of a monument to Holocaust victims, noting that it was important that every country in which Jews had been killed, including Croatia, face its own history without trying to embellish it.
The ŽOZ recently condemned the decision by the Zagreb City Assembly to build a monument in tribute to the six million Jews killed in the Holocaust. The World Jewish Congress has joined it in denouncing the decision, saying that its purpose is to conceal the truth about the killings of Jews in the Ustasha-ruled Independent State of Croatia (NDH).
Mor said that although the idea to commemorate the Jews who perished in the Holocaust was always a positive sign, it was also important that every country in which Jews were murdered face its own history without trying to embellish it.
We need to look history in the eye and say that we are responsible. We must remember because the Jews in Croatia, Hungary and Poland were part of our society and were murdered by the Nazis and their collaborators, Mor told Hina.
He said that the Holocaust was an important and sensitive issue which the Jewish community in Zagreb had to deal with together with the authorities, adding that it was up to the Jewish community in Zagreb to find a solution to this issue and that he had no doubt that it would be found in consultation with Mayor Milan Bandić.
Mor said he appreciated the mayor’s efforts over the years to commemorate the Holocaust as such and the Holocaust in Croatia.
We visited Jasenovac together, and no one should doubt his commitment to dealing with the past. How that will be done, I leave it to Mayor Bandić and the Jewish community and I am sure that they will find a proper solution, Mor said, adding that he would support ŽOZ president Ognjen Kraus’s decision whatever it may be.
Mor stressed the importance of remembering that Croatian Jews were part of Croatian society, that they contributed a lot to Croatia’s prosperity in the past and that they were murdered because of anti-Semitism.
Mor noted that the Holocaust did not start in Auschwitz or Jasenovac, but that it started with anti-Semitism. Anti-Semitism should be fought with education, and erecting monuments is part of that process, he concluded.
More news about the status of Jews in Croatia can be found in the Politics section.