European Day of the Righteous
I was born in Mali in a family that taught me the respect of the others, whatever their faith or belief, to be able to live together. This is wealth This is why on the day of the attack I thought of what my mothers had told me. by Lassana Bathily
The words of the Minister of Foreign Affairs Angelino Alfano and the Secretary of the Democratic Party Matteo Renzi in support to European day of the Righteous, reminding us of the importance of dialogue and good.
The words by Dr. Ruth Farrugia, Director General of the President's Foundation for the Wellbeing of Society in Malta, express the support to the European Day of the Righteous and to those who fought and are still fighting against persecutions.
The Righteous of dialogue, the meeting of diversities to overcome hatred is the theme chosen to celebrate in Milan European Day of the Righteous 2017. This is why on 15 March we will dedicate six new trees to Hamadi Ben Abdesslem, Raif Badawi, Lassana Bathily, Etty Hillesum and Pinar Selek.
Today we are here to remember but at the same time we are here to pass on this memory. Neither of this is an easy task. We, therefore, rely on those persons of goodwill who have made their choices "despite everything", those Righteous, who in the course of history, in the face of genocide and mass killings, have defended human dignity and saved lives at the risk of their own.
A few weeks ago I learned that on next 6 March, between the five trees to be planted in Milan in honour of five Righteous in history, one will be dedicated to Etty Hillesum.
The European Day of Righteous
The value of individuals and personal responsibility
On May 10, the European Parliament in Strasbourg adopted the Written Declaration establishing March 6th as European Day in memory of the Righteous.
The concept of Righteous, born from the elaboration of the Yad Vashem Memorial to remember the non-Jews who rescued the Jews, becomes the patrimony of all humanity.
The term "Righteous" is no longer confined to the Holocaust only; it becomes a point of reference for those who remember the genocide and totalitarianism in all their efforts to defend human dignity.
The significance of this decision is reminiscent of one of the cornerstones of European culture: the value of the individual and personal responsibility.