• Sweden's news in English
 
app_header_v3

Swedish Jews welcome Auschwitz school trip

Patrick Reilly · 3 Jun 2014, 14:57

Published: 03 Jun 2014 14:57 GMT+02:00

Sweden's Minister for EU Affairs Birgitta Ohlsson has pledged to spend five million kronor ($749,000) to send 400 pupils and 40 teachers to visit the former German Nazi concentration camp in present day Poland.

In an op-ed in the Expressen newspaper Ohlsson said the move was necessary to educate Swedish children about the horrors of the Holocaust, particularly in the wake of neo-Nazi parties gaining seats in the recent European elections.

"I'm very happy to hear that the government is doing this. It's generous and conveys a strong message that we must never forget what happened at Auschwitz," Lena Posner-Korosi, President of the Council of Sweden's Jewish communities, told The Local.

Korosi said she was delighted to read the news.

"I applaud Birgitta Ohlsson. She is very informed about the issues and is a very knowledgable person," she said.

Under the terms of the programme the five million kronor will be allocated to the Swedish committee against anti-Semitism. In addition to the visit to Auschwitz there will be pre and post seminars involving Holocaust survivors to give participants a greater understanding of the tragedy.

"Nazi vile and industrial extermination of six million Jews, incomprehensible cruelty against Roma, LGBT people, individuals with disabilities, religious and political dissidents is unique in its kind in world history," Ohlsson wrote in the Expressen article.

Lena Posner-Korosi told The Local that it was imperative for pupils to visit Auschwitz as she has done in the past.

"My mother-in-law managed to survive Auschwitz. She was 16 when she got out and when I spoke to her about it she remembered everything. The horrors of life in the barracks and the atrocities that went on," she said.

"When you go there and see for yourself how they lived and all the suitcases in the museum it really gets to you. For me it was a very emotional experience."

The recent success of far-right parties in the EU elections is a cause of concern for both Ohlsson and Posner-Korosi.

In Sweden there have been numerous incidents of anti-Semitism in the last few years, a Stockholm school was daubed with Nazi graffiti while the Jewish community centre in Malmö was bombed.

DON'T MISS: Fear and giggles - A day as a Jew in Malmö

Story continues below…

"We are seeing this happening all over Europe where parties with a clear Nazi agenda are being elected," said Posner-Korosi.

"In Sweden these type of attacks are nothing new. When you see what happened at the Jewish museum in Brussels where people were killed by an extremist, that could easily have happened in Sweden."

Ohlsson said the programme is expected to be multi-year, with the first students to begin the seminars later in the autumn.

"If it happened once then it can happen. Young people need to know what really happened as there are a lot of Holocaust deniers out there. Teaching democracy is number one," concluded Posner-Korosi

Patrick Reilly (news@thelocal.se)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Record number of drowning deaths in Sweden this year
Linus Magnusson och Ester Meijer, life guards at Skanör beach in southern Sweden last year. Photo: Andreas Hillergren/TT

More people have drowned in Sweden so far this year than in any other year this century. The good weather is getting the blame.

Presented by American Express
6 simple travel hacks that will make your life easier
File photo: Pixabay

Getting ready to jet off on summer holidays? Be sure to check out these tips and tricks for avoiding unnecessary headaches between packing and relaxing.

Pupils' school photo Nazi salute 'wasn't criminal'
The harbour in Simrishamn, close to where the incident took place. Photo: Jorchr/Wikimedia Commons

Four high school students who performed a Nazi salute in a school photo have had their convictions for inciting racial hatred quashed by an appeal court.

Opinion
'We don't know how Brexit will affect our time in Sweden'
Sweden-based Brit Sarah Campbell, left. Photo: Private & AP Photo/Tim Ireland

One month after the Brexit referendum Sarah Campbell, a British reader based in Uppsala, pens a love letter to her European Union.

Royal husband: 'Britain should not leave the EU'
Sweden's Princess Madeleine and her British-American husband Chris O'Neill. Photo: Mikael Fritzon/TT

What does this British-American husband of a Swedish princess think of Brexit and Hillary Clinton?

This Swede is the world's best mosquito catcher
Kristoffer Ekersund. Photo: Private & Johan Nilsson/TT

Yes, there is such a thing as the world championship in mosquito killing.

Which of these two Swedes is Vincent van Gogh's lost twin?
Ivar Arpi, a self-portrait of Vincent van Gogh and Petter Samuelson. Photo: Tomlin Studio & Private

Question: What is even more bizarre than a Swede who really, really looks like Vincent van Gogh? Answer: TWO Swedes who look like Vincent van Gogh.

Date set for verdict in asylum home murder trial in Sweden
The accused in court with a member of his legal team. Photo: Adam Ihse/TT

The trial of a man accused of killing a worker at a home for young refugees earlier this year has ended.

High security as Orlando top of mind at Stockholm Pride
This man might not actually be a police officer. Photo: Vilhelm Stokstad/TT

Nothing is being left to chance, organizers insist.

Fired Ericsson boss to get millions in payouts
Hans Vestberg of Ericsson. Photo: Christine Olsson/TT

Swedish telecoms giant Ericsson has fired its long-standing CEO Hans Vestberg, but said he will receive a severance package amounting to millions of kronor.

Sponsored Article
What can newcomers learn about Sweden at Almedalen?
National
Sweden's Hollywood star Alicia Vikander puts her pen in the bottle
Sponsored Article
5 reasons you should try dating with The Inner Circle
Gallery
People-watching: July 22nd-24th
The Local Voices
The Jewish Syrian who dreams of rebuilding his country
Blog updates

22 July

After the horror, carry on regardless (Globally Local) »

"This time last week, we were just digesting the horror of the Nice killings, in which…" READ »

 

11 July

Swedish quizzes (The Swedish Teacher) »

"Hej! I have created some quizzes you can take online to test your Swedish skills. Here…" READ »

 
 
 
National
Watch this Swedish weather host leave his fly open... on live TV
Sponsored Article
Gran Canaria: Where Swedes go to work (and play)
The Local Voices
'I fled war in Syria. I never expected to be beaten in Sweden'
National
WATCH: Asylum seeker brutally beaten by Swedish bus driver
Technology
Why everyone is talking about Sweden's GTA pride parade
Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
National
EU hits truck cartel with record price fixing fine
Sponsored Article
Why Swiss hospitality graduates are in demand
Society
OPINION: Why Sweden is the most extreme country in the world
The Local Voices
'There is equality in accommodation in Sweden: Everyone is suffering'
Sponsored Article
Five easy ways to travel more often
Gallery
Property of the week: Gräsö, Östhammar
Sponsored Article
Why expats choose international health insurance
Gallery
People-watching: July 15th-17th
National
How to make sure you're not caught out by Sweden's old bank notes
Sponsored Article
'Sweden's Lauryn Hill' touches the country's musical soul
Business & Money
Why Sweden has been named the most innovative country in Europe
Sponsored Article
Five things Americans should know about voting abroad
National
Terror attack: what should you do?
National
French expat on the moment he was assaulted by a Stockholm bouncer
Sponsored Article
Local guide: the best of Berlin
Technology
Gunman? Nah, smartphone Swede
Sponsored Article
Why you need a EuroBonus American Express Card
The Local Voices
'If the war in Syria ended today, would you go back?'
The Local Voices
‘I feel like I’m living in a grave!’
Gallery
IN PICTURES: Sweden's Princess Victoria celebrates 39th birthday
Gallery
People-watching: July 13th
National
Swedes discover surprise mountain
Politics
What Sweden's home secretary thinks of Britain's new PM
Gallery
Property of the week: Smedjebacken, Dalarna
The Local Voices
'Even xenophobic Swedes can be polite’
Politics
WATCH: A very Swedish take on Brexit...
National
Swede's fury at Daily Mail's Bråvalla 'lies'
Gallery
People-watching: July 8th-10th
National
Sweden and Denmark trolled each other on Twitter and it's hilarious
The Local Voices
'The best time to be smuggled to Europe is August 20th, 2015'
The Local Voices
Swedes: Stop obsessing over your material life and start talking to strangers
3,347
jobs available