| January 28, 2009
WIESENTHAL CENTER URGES UN HUMAN RIGHTS COMMISSIONER TO PUBLICLY DENOUNCE HOLOCAUST DENIAL
Egyptian Cleric Endorses Nazi-Like Genocide by Muslims and Iranian Government Spokesman Calls Holocaust “Big Lie"
The Simon Wiesenthal Center is urging UN High Commissioner on Human Rights Navanethem Pillay to publicly denounce Holocaust denial following reports that while the rest of the world solemnly observed International Holocaust Memorial Day this week, the Iranian government marked the day by continuing its state-sponsored denial of the Holocaust and a Egyptian cleric on television proclaimed hope that Muslims will finish Hitler's job.
At a conference on the recent Gaza conflict, Gholam Hossein Elham, the spokesman for the Iranian government, labeled the Holocaust, “a concept coming from a big lie in order to settle a rootless regime in the heart of the Islamic world.” “Iran's continuing campaign of Holocaust denial and threats is further proof that Durban 2 [the UN’s upcoming World Conference Against Racism] will be a dangerous and cynical farce masquerading as diplomatic discourse,” said Rabbi Abraham Cooper, associate dean of the Wiesenthal Center.
According to the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) the Sunni Muslim television channel Al-Rahma (Mercy) featured Egyptian cleric Amin Al-Ansari commenting that Jews call this week’s memorial observance, "Holocaust Holiday, in which they rekindle what happened to them, for the whole world to see, so that people will feel sorry for them... so that they can continue to extort people politically and financially forever. They like money." And as footage of the tortured inmates in Dachau, Mauthausen, and Belsen concentration camps is shown, Al- Ansari says, “This Is What We Hope Will Happen But, Allah Willing, at the Hand of the Muslims.”
“Such statements, which too often go totally unchallenged, constitute a call for genocide," said Rabbi Cooper. “Where are the international human rights NGOs concerned with the violation of international human rights law? This Holocaust Memorial Day, it’s time for these groups to speak out against this escalating anti- Jewish invective.”
The Simon Wiesenthal Center is one of the largest international Jewish human rights organizations with over 400,000 member families in the United States. It is an NGO at international agencies including the United Nations, UNESCO, the OSCE, and the Council of Europe.
For more information, please contact the Center’s Public Relations Department, 310-553-9036.