The event took place in the presence of Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon.
"This agreement is a step that doubles the power of 87 states' cooperation in the fight against the de-legitimization of Israel and anti-Semitism towards Jews around the world," Ayalon said.
"There are those who deny the Holocaust and are preparing for the next Holocaust. We must remember the Holocaust so that the horrors will not return, and we will make the world a safer place."
"This is the beginning of a long-term cooperation" said Janez Lenarcic. "We have recently published a review and received lots of useful information from the ITF. We have to all send out a message that anti-Semitism is a problem, while the ODIHR together with the ITF will team up and work together to fight for this important cause."
The Task Force for International Cooperation on Holocaust Education, Remembrance, and Research (ITF) was established about a decade ago, upon an initiative of the Swedish government.
The Israeli task force delegation is led by Aviva Raz Schechter, who heads the Foreign Ministry's Department for Combating Anti-Semitism and by Avner Shalev, Chairman of Yad VaShem.
'Mazal tov' wishesThis year, Israel serves as chairman of the task force, pursuant to political measures initiated by the Foreign Ministry, with Mr. Dan Tichon, former Knesset Speaker, as chairman of the organization and Ambassador Yacov Rosen as its political coordinator.
As he closed the event, Tichon stated that "2009 was a year which consisted of the highest point of anti-Semitism across the world, while almost every country suffered from anti-Semitism."
The Israeli and European parties parted by wishing each other "Mazal tov", the Jewish traditional blessing.
The ITF, aiming to promote the remembrance of the Holocaust through education, research and memorial sites, currently comprises 27 member countries, mostly European, which consider this to be an important step.
The ODIHR is involved, inter alia, in educational programs and in monitoring instances of xenophobia and mainly anti-Semitism and Islamophobia. Therefore, the cooperation may help promote the remembrance of the Holocaust and its uniqueness with the goal of combating anti-Semitism.
Ambassador Janez Lenarcic is a senior diplomat who served as a senior advisor to the Prime Minister of Slovenia. The ODIHR joins 6 other organizations which take part in the task force and whose representatives serve as observers, such as: UN Department of Public Information (DPI), UNESCO, the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA), and the European Council.
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