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In Biblical Town of Thessaloniki, Netanyahu Visits Future Site of Holocaust Museum: Shares Incredible WWII Story of Greek Bishop and Mayor

News Staff : Jun 15, 2017 : JNS.org

"This visit is particularly moving for us because Thessaloniki is a famous city in Jewish history and in Greek history. [Nazis] destroyed about 95 percent of this extraordinary and proud Jewish Community." -Benjamin Netanyahu

airlift(Greece)—[JNS.org] Israeli Prime Minister Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his wife Sara, attended a ceremony unveiling the construction of a new Holocaust museum in the Greek city of Thessaloniki. (Photo: Sara Netanyahu, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu with Greece's Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras (center) and Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades/Credit: Amos Ben-Gershom/GPO/via JNS.org)

At the unveiling, the Netanyahus were accompanied by Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades.

Tsipras noted the shared history of Greece and Israel and how the museum would safeguard the memory of the Holocaust as well as one of the most dramatic eras in the history of Thessaloniki.

In his remarks, Netanyahu shared that the father of his wife, Sara, "is the only one of a family of almost 100 people who survived and therefore, this visit here is particularly moving for us because Thessaloniki is a famous city in Jewish history and in Greek history."

Netanyahu also touched on Thessaloniki's recent history in which the Nazi's "destroyed about 95 percent of this extraordinary and proud Jewish Community."

He shared a little-known story about the "heroism of the Greeks," in "the case of the Island of Zakynthos, where the German commander said, 'Give me a list of the Jews' and the bishop and the mayor brought a list of the Jews, two names. They said, 'This is our Jews. Take us.' We honor these two great heroes among the righteous among the nations in [Israel's] Yad Vashem."

Netanyahu's visit to the future museum site came as part of a trip to Greece to attend a third trilateral summit between Israeli, Greek and Cypriot leaders. 

[Reprinted with permission of JNS.org]



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