Drama before Israeli’s President’s visit to Latvia
Today Israeli President Shimon Peres is arriving to Latvia for two days visit. But shortly before it last week there was small scandal - Israel argued that President Andris Bērziņš does not want to attend a Holocauset memorial ceremony.
Delegates from Israel usually have hard program in Latvia - they attend Holocaust Memorials and other places where Jewish people were tortured or killed in Latvia. Usually it also includes apologizing from Latvia’s side for those Latvians who participated in killing Jewish.
Latvia denies these allegations that Andris Bērziņš does not want to attend Holocaust Memorial and stresses that this year Shimon Peres will have opportunity to attend Žanis Lipke- man who saved many Jewish during war- museum and see that there were also Latvians who helped.
Latvia’s President Avoiding Holocaust Memorial - Jewish World - News - Israel National News
Latvian President Andris Berzins is making an effort to avoid attending a Holocaust memorial ceremony together with Israel’s President Shimon Peres during his upcoming visit to Latvia next week.
Berzins aides responded to a request from senior Israeli staff that he attend the ceremony at the Rumbula Forest with Peres, saying Berzins was too busy. They also reportedly told Israeli aides there is a state policy in the country preventing the Latvian president from accompanying visiting presidents to ceremonies, according to Israeli media.
The ceremony commemorates the deaths of 24,000 Jews from Riga and 1,000 German Jews murdered in the forest in November-December 1941 by the Einsatzgruppen units of the SS Nazi police, assisted by Latvian police and volunteers. They were transported to the forest by train and thrown into pits dug by the German Jews at the site.