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Archived - Minister Uppal marks the 70th anniversary of the Liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau

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Events in Poland to remember the Holocaust

January 27, 2015—Krakow, Poland—Tim Uppal, Minister of State for Multiculturalism, today joined other international dignitaries to pay tribute to victims of the Holocaust and Nazi genocide on the 70th anniversary of the liberation of the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration and extermination camp.

Between 1940 and 1945, more than one million people -- mainly Jews -- were exterminated at the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp, which has become an enduring symbol of the Holocaust. The day the camp was liberated by the Soviet Red Army, January 27, has been designated as an annual International Day of Commemoration in memory of the victims of the Holocaust.

The event in Krakow, which included a large number of Holocaust survivors, also raised awareness of the Auschwitz-Birkenau Foundation, which was established in 2009 to fund conservation and preservation efforts at the site. Canada is a strong supporter of the foundation, and in 2012, the federal government donated $400,000 to help preserve the Auschwitz-Birkenau memorial site for future generations.

The Government of Canada believes that remembrance of the Holocaust is an important way to teach and promote respect for universal human rights, and an important reminder of the importance of preserving and promoting the Canadian values of freedom, democracy and the rule of law.

Quick facts  

  • Approximately 40,000 Holocaust survivors settled in Canada after World War II.
  • Canada is a member of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA), an intergovernmental body made up of experts from 31 countries that supports Holocaust education, remembrance and research around the world.
  • The UN General Assembly designated January 27 as International Holocaust Remembrance Day. The UN urges member states on that day to honour the victims of the Nazis and to develop educational programs to help prevent future genocides.


“Canada is a leader in the international fight against anti-Semitism because it is a Canadian tradition to stand for what is principled and just. Our government is dedicated to ensuring future generations understand the lessons of the Holocaust in order to prevent acts of hate and genocide.”

Tim Uppal, Minister of State for Multiculturalism

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Joe Kanoza
Minister’s Office - Minister of State Uppal

Media Relations
Communications Branch
Citizenship and Immigration Canada

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