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German footballers to visit Auschwitz

The Local · 28 Mar 2012, 07:30

Published: 28 Mar 2012 07:30 GMT+02:00

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Niersbach told the weekly newspaper Jüdische Allgemeine, in an interview to be published on Thursday, that football chiefs agreed that the visit should be made out of respect to victims of the Holocaust rather than as a public spectacle.

No date has yet been fixed for the visit, he added.

The announcement comes after the chairman of the Central Council of Jews in Germany earlier this month called for the national team to visit one of the memorials dedicated to victims of the Holocaust before the championships in Poland and Ukraine.

More than a million Jews were murdered by the Nazis at the Auschwitz-Birkenau camp, which lies 70 kilometres west of Krakow and around 570km from the Germans' base in Gdansk.

The England team, who will be based in Krakow, have said they also will visit Auschwitz to pay their respects.

The German-Jewish body also urged a visit to Babi Yar, near the Ukrainian capital Kiev, which hosts the Euro 2012 final on July 1, where SS soldiers massacred more than 33,000 Jews in late September 1941 during a single operation.

Niersbach said: "I myself have already been to Auschwitz and I know from my own experience how much the memory of the Holocaust is important."

In the interview, Niersbach also touched on the verbal attacks against Kaiserslautern's Israeli striker Itay Shechter earlier this month, saying that, "anti-Semitism is a persistent problem in society and for all of us in football."

Story continues below…

The DFB president, however, said he was "impressed by the dignity and restraint with which Itay Shechter handled the situation and how the Kaiserslautern fans supported him."


The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

19:32 March 28, 2012 by klaus stoiber
Comment removed by The Local for breach of our terms.
19:41 March 28, 2012 by Englishted
I did not think that the Jews are a race they are a religion.

But paying respects is the right thing to do and I am glad England are doing it as well, shame it could not be done together.

I wish everybody would visit a "camp " it is a sobering and moving experience and shows what a evil racism was and is.
21:08 March 28, 2012 by Denis MacEoin
Unfortunately, many people think of Jews racially. For example, the Nazis arrested and killed Jews using racist criteria. Even if a Jew had converted to Christianity, he was still counted as a Jew. And a Christian who had converted to Judaism would not be considered Jewish if he did not have Jewish. There is an element of this in Jewish thought, where you only become Jewish by having a Jewish mother. But all but the most orthodox Jews accept conversion, so the religious criterion applies.
06:19 March 29, 2012 by reallybigdog
What a joke and to repost this article again is nothing more than media brainwashing.

Jews kill Palestinians, Americans, Jews and the English kill muslims happily after invading these countires based of utter BS but wait..........go to Auschwitz so we do not repeate crimes of the past...opps, too late...was there a lesson to be learned here??

Anyways boys just stop in have a look around to avoid being labeled a racists with some small level of interest and then lets get back to rapping killing caging people like animals!! Its the American, English and Jewish way unless you dont like us and therfore we will attack and kill you anyway and then blame you for inciting the incident in the first place you racist pigs.

Gotta love the delusional reality this paints if you actually get it!
22:00 March 30, 2012 by Englishted

The invasion of Iraq may have been wrong (let him gas his own people because it does not effect me ) but it was not the same as building death camps and rounding up people based on their religion and murdering them (6 million approx.)

If you can't see the difference then I believe you a deluded and/ or brainwashed .
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