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Press Information published by the International Auschwitz Committee


Abhorrence and dismay: offensive attitude of Italy’s Minister of the Interior, Matteo Salvini, creates space for racists

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It is with abhorrence and dismay that Auschwitz survivors around the globe are following the increasingly offensive attitude and remarks of Italy’s Minister of the Interior, Matteo Salvini. They are equally apprehensive about Salvini’s blindness towards the far right: the activities of Neo-Nazi groups in Italy, as well as their acquisition of weapons, are of no interest, since he knows they are on his side.

The Holocaust survivors are focusing their attention especially on the renewed activities against the Sinti and Roma living in Italy. Auschwitz survivors feel deep bonds with them as fellow sufferers. It was the decided aim of the Nazis to annihilate not only Jewish people, but also Sinti and Roma. More than 23,000 Sinti and Roma from eleven countries were murdered in the gas chambers of Auschwitz-Birkenau. On August 2, 2019, it will be 75 years since the remaining 2,900 members of the Romani people were murdered in Birkenau.

Commenting in Berlin on the actions against Sinti and Roma ordered by Salvini, Christoph Heubner, Executive Vice President of the International Auschwitz Committee said:

“With his renewed threats to Sinti and Roma, Salvini is pushing the floodgates of hatred in Italy wide open. He is exposing the weakest amongst the vulnerable in Europe to hatred on the streets - something he repeatedly provokes amongst his followers. All such strategies of hatred are an insult to the spirit of Europe. They are just as abhorrent and shameful as the racist tweets of another politician.”


For further Information

Christoph Heubner

Executive Vice President
International Auschwitz Committee
Phone ++ 49 (0)30 26 39 26 81