Events to mark this year’s Holocaust commemorations take place this week to remember the Nazi genocide of six million Jews.

A public flag-raising and candle vigil will be held outside Barking Town Hall on Holocaust Memorial Day, (Friday, January 27c), between 1 and 3pm.

There will be a minute’s silence and a public screening of the Holocaust Ordinary People video.

Holocaust Memorial Day also remembers other genocides such as Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia, and Darfur.

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The date marks the anniversary of the 1945 liberation of the Nazis’ Auschwitz death camp, an annual commemoration to act against hate and prejudice.

“We must never forget the atrocities to make sure they never happen again,” Barking and Dagenham deputy council leader Saima Ashraf said. “This highlights the role we all play in challenging fascist and prejudice behaviour, to come together in solidarity and stand against hate.”

Starved inmates of Auscwitz death camp

Starved inmates of Auscwitz death camp

The Holocaust, or “Shoah” in Hebrew, was Hitler’s attempt to wipe out all the Jews of Europe. It began when the Nazis took power in Germany in 1933, at first denying human and civil rights with medieval anti-Semitism, then finally industrial-scale extermination in death camps after the outbreak of war in 1939 when Nazi Germany invaded and occupied most of the Continent.

Millions of Jews perished, and other minorities the Nazis deemed “inferior races”. It became known as “the Final Solution” to wipe out six million Jewish men, women and even children.

Hannah Lewis... one of the few survivors of Nazi death camps

Hannah Lewis... one of the few survivors of Nazi death camps

The Holocaust ended with the Allied liberation of Europe and Hitler’s death.