News Releases 2010

Paris, 6 July 2010

In a letter to Mayor of Paris suburb of St.Denis, Didier Paillard, the Simon Wiesenthal Centre’s Director for International Relations, Dr.Shimon Samuels, noted that “a shantytown, Hanul, in your city St-Denis, that has been home to over 150 Roma Gypsies for the last ten years, is to be demolished and the residents forcibly removed.

With so many Parisians on vacation, the deportation is expected to go by with muted public and media reaction”.

The letter continued “as Mayor for the last two years and a City Counsellor in preceding years, you are well aware of the miserable conditions in Hanul.” 

The letter noted that “as a Communist Party leader in a city known for its anti-Nazi resistance under Vichy, you are surely aware of the deportation of Roma to the death camps, even from France.” 

The Centre urged the Mayor “to condemn, and use your authority to call off a neo-fascist-style ethnic cleansing brewing in your city and provide 
police protection to the Roma targetted.” 

“Join our campaign to ‘kick out racism’ before the end of the World Cup Final this week,” concluded Samuels.

"Identity Theft of Holocaust and Antisemitism Delegitimize the Jewish Narrative."

Astana, Kazakhstan, 30 June 2010

"Mr. Chairman,

The OSCE Berlin Declaration of 2004 included, on the one hand, the denial, relativization and trivalization of the Holocaust and, on the other, the abuse of developments in Israel and the Middle East, as contributing factors to antisemitism.

Paris, 22 June 2010

In a letter to Norwegian Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg, the Simon Wiesenthal Centre’s Director for International Relations, Dr.Shimon Samuels, noted that “this weekend, 20 June, marked ‘International Refugee Day’ to celebrate the contribution made by refugees and migrants to their host countries and also the injustices they face”. 

He quoted the United for Intercultural Action Special Report for the occasion, entitled “‘13,824 Deaths: Blood on European Hands’ – a litany including 286 drownings and harrowing stories at detention facilities across the continent”. 

Paris, 15 June 2010

In a letter to European Union Foreign Minister, Baroness Ashton of Upholland, the Simon Wiesenthal Centre’s Director for International Relations, Dr. Shimon Samuels, explained that “due to the current political vacuum in the Netherlands following General Election, we are requesting your intervention to investigate the rampant epidemic in antisemitic incidents in that country.” 

The letter noted that “despite the iconic story of Dutch righteous gentiles hiding Anne Frank and her family, their eventual denunciation and deportation highlighted the irony that a higher percentage of Dutch Jews perished in the Holocaust than in any other country in Western Europe.”

Paris, 10 June 2010

In a letter to United Nations Human Rights Commissioner, Navi Pillay, the Simon Wiesenthal Centre’s Director for International Relations, Dr. Shimon Samuels, strenuously protested "the racist language of Rania Al Rifaiy, the Syrian delegate to your United Nations Human Rights Council.” 

Samuels noted that Al Rifaiy barefacedly stated: “Let me quote a song that a group of children on a school bus  in Israel sing merrily as they go to school:‘with my teeth I will rip your flesh, with my mouth  I will suck your blood.’”

The letter added that ”such Syrian racism is recidivist and constant. Indeed, twenty-five years ago, the Wiesenthal Centre – with international support – slammed Syria's  official publication of its Defense Minister Mustafa Tlas’ book, 'The Matzah of Zion'".