Zagreb - Croatian Parliament Speaker Gordan Jandroković and Foreign and European Affairs Minister Marija Pejčinović Burić on Friday commented on an exhibition on the World War II concentration camp Jasenovac, staged by Serbia at the U.N. headquarters in New York, saying that it "manipulates the victims for daily political and propaganda purposes" and that exhibitions of that kind should not be organised the way Serbia had done it.
Jandroković and Pejčinović Burić made the statement while attending a wreath-laying ceremony at Zagreb's central Mirogoj cemetery on the occasion of International Holocaust Remembrance Day.
Asked if Croatian institutions could have known about the exhibition and if they could have prevented it, Jandroković said that the institutions did react and that the Foreign Ministry made its position clear on Thursday, as well as that the U.N. itself had distanced itself from the exhibition's content.
Pejčinović Burić said that the Holocaust was the most shameless and ugliest episode in human history and that in that context one should remember the most important principles of conduct regarding the commemoration of the Holocaust and its victims. "The Holocaust and all its victims deserve deepest respect, dignity and truthfulness," she said.
She questioned the purpose of the exhibition in terms of how it was organised, without the involvement of the only public institutions that was the most competent on the matter, the Jasenovac Memorial Centre.
"That is not the way to stage such exhibitions and commemorate the Jasenovac Holocaust victims. I believe that it is not good for such events to be organised at the U.N. where exhibits about something that happened in the territory of one member-country are usually not organised without the consent and participation of the country concerned," said Pejčinović Burić.
She noted that the fact that some elements of the exhibition had to be removed at Croatia's urging proved the grossest falsifications in it and that a part of the exhibition indeed was not in the service of commemorating the Holocaust and its victims.
The Jasenovac exhibition at the U.N. was organised by the GH7 group of historians from seven countries, headed by Israeli professor Gideon Greif, an expert on the concentration camps Auschwitz, Majdanek, Jasenovac and the Sonderkommand.(Hina)