Dutch WWII memorial day to feature Palestinian ‘shadow Holocaust’ event

THE HAGUE, Netherlands (JTA) — A Dutch Muslim group is planning to commemorate “the ethnic cleansing of Palestine” on Holland’s memorial day for victims of Nazism.

The Platform Bewust Muslim group is planning to hold the ceremony on Sunday at a mosque in Hilversum, near Amsterdam, under the banner “Palestine, the Shadow Holocaust,” the Jewish television channel Joods Omroep reported Monday on its website.

The event was advertised as a symposium offering “a review of the ethnic cleansing of Palestine and the passive attitude of the international community.”

May 4 is the Netherlands’ official day for Remembrance of the Dead, when commemorations are held for Dutch civilians and members of the armed forces killed by enemy forces in terrorist attacks or in combat. Many of the events are designed to commemorate victims of Nazism, often with an emphasis on Holocaust victims.

Hilversum has received 45 objections urging that the municipality prevent or postpone the event, Joods Omroep reported. Some complaints also were made to the Center for Information and Documentation on Israel, or CIDI, a watchdog group based in The Hague.

Hilversum Mayor Pieter Broertjes told the Joods Omroep that he is discussing the relevant issues with organizers, “including the possibility of postponement.”

One of the complainants is Jack Justus, who was among the leaders of a campaign that ended with the issuing of an injunction in 2012 banning the town of Vorden from advancing plans to memorialize German soldiers on May 4 along with their victims. Memorial organizers had said it was a gesture meant to promote world peace and reconciliation.

But “the Hilversum commemoration tops it all,” Justus told the Joods Omroep. “It’s an enormous insult to victims, survivors and their descendants.”

Separately, Landerd canceled plans to unveil a memorial plaque on Sunday for a German pilot who was shot down over the eastern Dutch town during World War II, the Omroep Brabant reported Monday. The cancellation followed a complaint by Justus and Federative Jewish Netherlands, the Jewish group that had obtained the injunction in 2012.

 

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