LONDON (JTA) – Britain’s prime minister visited Auschwitz and pledged that his government would assist school visits to the former Nazi death camp.
Gordon Brown said Tuesday that it was important for children to be aware of the horrors of the past.
The British government now funds annual trips to Auschwitz for secondary school pupils, and is committed to continue the funding for the next three years.
On a visit to Poland, Brown said that Auschwitz is a testament to the evil of the past. Prior to his private visit to the death camp, where more than 1 million people were murdered, Brown said that the site served as a reminder that future acts of inhumanity must be prevented.
He pledged British support to maintain Auschwitz as a permanent memorial amid concerns that the site is in a state of decay and funding for its museum is under threat.
Brown’s pledge is in response to Poland’s attempts to obtain international assistance to create a $156 million foundation to preserve the Auschwitz site.