Note No. 6531
22 January 2020

United Nations Will Mark International Day to Commemorate Victims of Holocaust at New York Headquarters, 27 January

The United Nations Department of Global Communications will organize several events on 27 January to observe the 2020 International Day of Commemoration in memory of the victims of the Holocaust under the theme “75 years after Auschwitz — Holocaust Education and Remembrance for Global Justice”.

Reflecting the continued importance of collective action against anti-semitism and other forms of bias 75 years after the Holocaust, the theme seeks to ensure respect for the dignity and human rights of all people everywhere.

The 2020 United Nations Holocaust Memorial Ceremony will be held in the General Assembly Hall from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Monday, 27 January, 75 years to the day since the liberation of Auschwitz Birkenau, the largest Nazi concentration and extermination camp, in operation from 1940 until 1945.

Hosting the ceremony will be Melissa Fleming, Under-Secretary-General for Global Communications.  Other speakers will include António Guterres, Secretary-General; Tijjani Muhammad-Bande (Nigeria), President of the seventy-fourth session of the General Assembly; Christoph Heusgen, Permanent Representative of Germany to the United Nations; Danny Danon, Permanent Representative of Israel; Vassily A. Nebenzia, Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation; Cherith Norman-Chalet, Acting Deputy Permanent Representative of the United States; Castro Wesamba, Chief of Office, United Nations Office on Genocide Prevention and the Responsibility to Protect; and Dan Pavel Doghi, Contact Point on Roma and Sinti Issues with the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe/Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights.

Judge Theodor Meron, former President of the United Nations International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals, will deliver the keynote address.  Shraga Milstein and Irene Shashar will share their testimony as Holocaust survivors.  Rabbi Arthur Schneier will recite the Kaddish and Cantor Shulem Lemmer the memorial prayers.  Itzhak Perlman will deliver a musical contribution.  Guests are invited to follow the conversation at #holocaustremembrance.  The ceremony will be webcast live at

Other events to be held in New York that day include the opening of the exhibition Seeing Auschwitz at 1:30 p.m. in the Visitors’ Lobby and a curated tour of the show by Paul Salmons, Chief Curator.  The exhibition is presented by Musealia, Spain, in collaboration with the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum, Poland.  It will be on view until 24 February.  A discussion titled “Safe Haven: Jewish Refugees in the Philippines” will take place at 3 p.m. under the sponsorship of B’nai B’rith International and the Permanent Mission of the Philippines to the United Nations.  Pianist Renan Koen will stage a recital hosted by the Permanent Mission of Turkey in the Economic and Social Council Chamber at 3 p.m.

To view the week’s calendar of events and registration details, please visit the Holocaust Programme website at  Valid photo identification is required to pass through United Nations security screening at the First Avenue/46th Street entrance.

Established by General Assembly resolution 60/7 in 2005, the Holocaust and the United Nations Outreach Programme’s multifaceted programme encompasses online and print educational resources, seminars, exhibitions, a film series and the annual worldwide observance of the International Day of Commemoration in memory of the victims of the Holocaust, on 27 January.  The Programme provides guidance on the observance to the global network of United Nations information centres.

For more information, please contact Tracey Petersen, the Holocaust and United Nations Outreach Programme at email:; tel.: +1 212 963 4578; or mobile: +1 646 508 8729.

Please contact the Media Accreditation and Liaison Unit at for media accreditation.

For information media. Not an official record.