Israel marks Holocaust Day

May 1, 2011 at 7:35 AM
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JERUSALEM, May 1 (UPI) -- Thousands of Holocaust survivors and Israelis Sunday mourned the 6 million Jews who died at the hands of the Nazis at memorial services throughout the country.

President Shimon Peres, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, and senior military and government officials planned to attend the official state ceremony marking Holocaust, Martyrs and Heroes Remembrance Day at the Yad Vashem museum in Jerusalem Sunday evening.

Six survivors will light beacons in memory of those who died.

This year's memorial theme is dubbed Fragments of Memory: The Faces behind the Documents, Artifacts and Photographs, a campaign launched by the museum together with the prime minister's office and other government ministries.

The aim of the project: to rescue personal items, documents, diaries, photographs and other artifacts from the Holocaust years and bring them to the museum for safekeeping, the museum Web site said.

Some 13,000 survivors died since last year's Memorial Day, Yedioth Ahronoth said Sunday, noting 208,000 survivors live in Israel, 74,000 of them survivors of the death camps and ghettos, the rest spending the war years fleeing Nazi persecution.

A nationwide siren was to be sounded mid-morning Monday when the public will observe a minute of silence in memory of those killed by the Nazis.

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