Wiesenthal Centre Invited to Join Carl Lutz Foundation Honorary Committee

Paris, 9 November 2017

Simon Wiesenthal Centre Director for International Relations, Dr. Shimon Samuels was invited to join an Honorary Committee of six diplomats from El Salvador, Hungary, Israel and Switzerland and representatives of CRIF (Council of French Jewish Institutions), the Memorial to the Shoah, Yad Vashem, Yahad in Unum, the Elie Wiesel Institute and the Women’s Co-operation Council, In Memory of Righteous Gentile, Carl Lutz.

Photo L-R: Frederic Hayat, Shimon Samuels and Xavier Cornut

Recognized as a "Righteous Gentile", this Swiss diplomat as Vice-Consul in Budapest, provided Hungarian Jews with protection certificates. After a confrontation with Adolf Eichmann, the architect of the Holocaust, Lutz conceived of an elaborate stratagem to place 76 residential buildings in Budapest under diplomatic extraterritoriality, in which he housed thousands of families. Protecting these quarters from the SS, he is credited with saving 62,000 men, women and children from deportation to Auschwitz.

Nominated on three occasions for the Nobel Peace Prize, Carl Lutz has been honoured in Israel, Hungary, the United States, Germany and now in his own country Switzerland.

Samuels joined the other members of the Honorary Committee (see below) in the call for a plaque in Lutz's memory outside the Swiss Foreign Ministry in Berne.

• M. Bernardino Regazzoni
Ambassadeur de Suisse en France
• M. Takács, Szabolcs
Ambassadeur de Hongrie auprès de l'IRHA
• Mme Carmen Maria Gallardo Hernandez
Ambassadeur d'El Salvador
• M. Georges Karoly
Ambassadeur de Hongrie en France
• M. Marc Attali
Ministre plénipotentiaire Israel en France
• M. Francis Kalifat
Président du CRIF
• M. Olivier Cadic
Sénateur représentant les français de l'étranger
• Mme Agnès Hirschi
Fille adoptive de Carl Lutz
• M. Jacques Fredj
Mémorial de la Shoah
Yad Vachem
Yad Vashem
• M.Shimon Samuels
Centre Simon Wiesenthal
• M. Patrick Desbois
Yahad in Unum
• Mme Rebekka Benesch
Conseillère de l’Ambassade de Suisse
• M. Xavier Cornut
Fondation Carl Lutz
• M. Raphy Marciano
Institut Elie Wiesel
• Mme Evelyne Berdugo
Présidente Coopération féminine

In his thanks to the organisers: Frederic Hayat and Xavier Cornut of the Carl Lutz Foundation and Lutz's adoptive daughter Agnes Hirschi, Samuels noted,
"Having worked alongside the late Simon Wiesenthal for almost twenty years until his passing, I am certain that the plaque acknowledging the vital role of Carl Lutz for the Jewish people and as a universal example, would have brought great satisfaction to Simon.

"It will also be applauded by his family and the 400,000 worldwide membership of the Simon Wiesenthal Centre".

Simon Wiesenthal had written the Preface to Teo Tschuy's biography of Carl Lutz, "Dangerous Diplomacy" which was distributed at the ceremony at the Rue Copernic Synagogue in Paris.

For further Information please contact Shimon Samuels 00 33 609 77 01 58, join the Center on Facebook, www.facebook.com/simonwiesenthalcenter, or follow @simonwiesenthal for news updates sent direct to your Twitter feed.
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, the OAS, the Council of Europe and the Latin American Parliament (Parlatino).