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Thanks to the efforts of Marek Kołcon, a Leader of Dialogue from Zamość, on October 16th Zamość commemorated the 76th Anniversary of the Annihilation of Zamość Jews. Guests gathered at the train station from which ghetto residents were deported to extermination camps in Bełżec and Sobibór took part in the unveiling of Polish, Hebrew, and English plaques commemorating those tragic events. The ceremony was well-attended by Zamość’s residents and its importance was recognized by representatives of Polish and international Jewish community, with the presence of Michael Schudrich, the Chief Rabbi of Poland, and Izrael Schek, the chairman of the Organization of Jews of Zamosc and Vicinity. The unveiling of the plaques was preceded with an academic panel featuring Alina Skibińska and Dariusz Libionka from Polish Center for Holocaust Research and Adam Kopciowski from Department of Jewish Culture and History at the Maria Curie-Sklodowska University in Lublin.

This moving ceremony is not only a testimony of Marek Kołcon’s tireless work and continuous involvement in saving and preservation of his town’s Jewish memory – his activism dates back to 2003 – but of the international cooperation and dialogue as well: funding for the plaques was obtained not only from institutional donors, but through the joint effort of German, Jewish, and Polish private patrons as well.

Photos by J.Petelewicz