21/04/2020 Tuesday

March of the Living to be held on April 21

The march will fall in the 75th anniversary of the end of the Second World War. Andrzej Grygiel/PAP

Jewish people from all over the world and Poland will pay tribute to Holocaust victims in the annual March of the Living on April 21, 2020, the March of the Living organisation has announced.

The march, which is usually held on Holocaust Remembrance Day, will be celebrated on April 21 next year.

The march will fall in the 75th anniversary of the end of the Second World War. The organisers estimate that around 10,000 will take part in the march's traditional three-kilometre route leading from the site of the former Nazi German death camp Auschwitz to a Holocaust memorial in the camp's Birkenau section, known as the main Holocaust site. The memorial, located between the ruins of Birkenau's two biggest gas chambers, will be the site of the day's main observances.

The first March of the Living took place in 1988. In the following years it was held biannually, from 1996 once a year. The most numerous event drew 20,000 participants from close to 50 countries. Attending the marches in the past were Polish and Israeli presidents and prime ministers as well as representatives of various religions.

The Germans founded the Auschwitz camp in 1940 as a prison for Polish people as due to mass arrests "local" prisons became overcrowded; Birkenau opened two years later and became the main site of the Holocaust.