Disputed Holocaust memorial dedicated in Greece


ATHENS, Greece (JTA) — A disputed Holocaust memorial was dedicated in Greece weeks after the original event was called off by city authorities.

The ceremony took place Sunday in Kavala, a port city in northern Greece, after the Greek Jewish community, the Greek government and international Jewish groups slammed the decision to cancel. City officials reportedly had wanted the Star of David removed from the monument.

The black marble monument commemorates the 1,484 Jews from Kavala who were murdered by the Nazis.

Hundreds of people attended Sunday’s event, including Greek government officials, the leaders of the Greek Jewish communities and the Israeli ambassador to Greece.

Kavala Mayor Dimitra Tsanaka, who was behind the decision to cancel the earlier ceremony, denied that she objected to the Star of David, but said that city councilmen from her party objected to the size and placement of the Jewish emblem on the monument.

The Central Board of Jewish Communities in Greece said that it had accepted the proposal by Tsanaka to dedicate the monument only after she and the City Council issued a statement confirming that it would be erected in its original form and location. It also followed statements of support from the Greek government and protests by the citizens of Kavala.

“The Holocaust monument is not only a symbol of remembrance and a tribute to the 1,484 Jewish victims of Kavala, it is an emblem against intolerance, racism and anti-Semitism,” the Jewish community said.

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