Background on the event on 27 January 2015
No government official from Serbia attended the 60th anniversary commemoration of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau. The intervening years until this 70th anniversary have not brought affirmative change in the way the state addresses remembrance. The trend in Serbia has been particularly negative. The events of World War II have become a past suppressed or distorted by different interpretation of events, actors and victims. Belgrade is the only European capital with four concentration and death camps, but none is adequately marked, nor is the memory of the victims honored. Fascist and neo-Nazi groups operate with impunity and thrive under powerful patronage.
In 2014, CZKD began work on a project to accentuate remembrance of the Belgrade’s concentration camps. The project includes documentary films and a number of awareness-raising activities; see https://indievoic.es/#!/ project/23/story for a short video in English.
The work aims to create public pressure on the state to give the commemoration of WWII victims a significant place on the national agenda, to show that Serbia is committed to honoring past tragedies and ensuring that they cannot be repeated in the future.
On 27 January 2015, at 19:00, the CZKD will convene a round table based on Auschwitz survivor Djordje Lebović’s (1928-2004) play, Nebeski odred [tr., Heavenly Detachment],which is set in Auschwitz. Using questions drawn from the text of the play, the round table will examine the issue of testimony and giving witness.