B’nai B’rith Europe partnered with the European Commission, the Swedish Presidency of the council of the EU, the Swedish Presidency of IHRA and major Jewish organizations in the organization of the Holocaust Remembrance event “Remembering the past, Shaping the Future” that took place on the 23rd of January in Brussels.

Margaritis Schinas, European Commission Vice-President for Promoting our European way of Life, alongside Paulina Brandberg, Swedish Minister for Gender Equality and Deputy Minister for Employment, Amb. Ann Bernes,Chair of the Swedish Presidency of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) and Professor Yehuda Bauer, International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance Honorary Chair and Holocaust Survivor, delievered the opening statements. The opening was followed by a conversation with Holocaust Survivor Henriette Kretz, a commemoration ceremony and a panel discussion on ‘Where the Holocaust happened’. 

The Kaddish was recited by Rabbi Avi Tawil, followed by a minute of silence. Candles were lit to commemorate the victims. Valérie Achache, BBE Secretary General, lit one of the candles on behalf of B’nai B’rith Europe.

Pictures and videos here


Henriette Kretz, Holocaust survivor, was born in 1934 in Stanisławów, Poland, today Iwano-Frankiwsk in Ukraine. The persecution of her family started immediately after the German invasion of Poland in September 1939. Henriette and her family found refuge in Lviv and then in Sambor in Eastern Poland. After the German invasion of the Soviet Union in 1941, her family lived in a ghetto and had to hide for long months in order to survive.

Valerie Achache, BBE Secretary General