US President Barack Obama on Sunday vowed to prevent genocide, as the world marked Holocaust Remembrance Day on the anniversary of the 1945 liberation of the Auschwitz concentration camp.
"Those who experienced the horrors of the cattle cars, ghettos, and concentration camps have witnessed humanity at its very worst and know too well the pain of losing loved ones to senseless violence," he said in a statement.
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"We honor the memories of the six million Jews and millions of other innocent victims whose lives were tragically taken during the Holocaust over sixty years ago."
However, the American leader said, the anniversary is also a "time for action."
"We recall the courage, spirit, and determination of those who heroically resisted the Nazis, exemplifying the very best of humanity. And like these courageous individuals, we must commit ourselves to resisting hate and persecution in all its forms. The United States, along with the international community, resolves to stand in the way of any tyrant or dictator who commits crimes against humanity, and stay true to the principle of 'Never Again,' Obama said in the statement.
Obama, Elie Wiesel at Holocaust Memorial Museum (Archive photo: AP)
"By remaining vigilant against those who seek to perpetrate violence and murder, we honor those we lost during one of the darkest periods in human history. And we keep their memory alive for generations to come."
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday drew a parallel between the Holocaust and modern-day threats faced by Israel, stressing the importance of standing guard against regional risks.
"We have to watch out for what is happening around us," Netanyahu said in a Cabinet meeting, noting Iran's nuclear program and Syria's chemical weapons. "The Middle East isn't waiting for the election's results, and it doesn't stop while we form a government."
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