Polish Senate approves national day to honor citizens who saved Jews


WARSAW, Poland (JTA) — The Polish Senate approved a resolution making March 24 a day to remember Poles who saved Jews during World War II.

President Andrzej Duda initiated the National Remembrance Day for Poles Who Saved Jews.

The resolution approved Wednesday was supported by 58 senators, including 51 from the ruling Law and Justice party. Fourteen senators voted against the resolution, including 13 from the center-right Civic Platform party. Three abstained from the vote.

“In the conviction of the president, this day is meant to connect Poles with different views, but with a common belief that people who saved the Jewish population deserve respect,” said Wojciech Kolarski, the undersecretary of state in the Chancellery of the President.

On March 24, 1944, the Germans murdered the Ulma family – Józef, Wiktoria, and their six children – in Markowa, in southeastern Poland. Jews who were hiding in their house also were killed that day. On March 17, 2016, the Museum of Poles Rescuing Jews was opened in Markowa.

Some 6,000 Poles have been named Righteous Among the Nations by the Yad Vashem memorial in Jerusalem for saving Jews, the most of any nation.

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