Forum of Polish Jews critical of World Holocaust Forum speakers

The Forum of Polish Jews has criticised the fact that representatives of states which signed the Ribbentrop-Molotov pact in 1939 will give speeches at the World Holocaust Forum to be held in Jerusalem on 23 January, whereas Poland's voice will not be heard.

The Forum of Polish Jews wrote on Twitter that "everything points to the fact that in Jerusalem those giving speeches will be representatives of states that signed the Ribbentrop-Molotov agreement (Germany, Russia), the main perpetrator of the Holocaust (Germany) and those who willingly handed over Jews to the Germans to be gassed in Auschwitz (France)."

The Twitter statement went on to say that "the Polish president, representing a state whose government raised the alarm around the world over the extermination of Jews in German-occupied Poland, is the one voice which will not be included or heard."

President Andrzej Duda said on Tuesday that he will not take part in the observances organised by the World Holocaust Forum in Jerusalem on 23 January. Duda justified his decision not to attend the Forum by saying that the organisers saw no possibility for the Polish president to speak at the event.

President Duda's position on the matter has the full backing of Poland's Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki.

On August 23, 1939 - a week before the outbreak of World War II - German Foreign Minister Joachim von Ribbentrop and his Soviet counterpart Vyacheslav Molotov at a meeting in Moscow signed a Soviet-German non-aggression pact with a secret, additional protocol, which divided Eastern Europe into spheres of influence, including the division of Poland between the two totalitarian superpowers.