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DGIV/EDU/MEM (2005) 10

Seminar of the European Ministers of Education 1

“Teaching remembrance through cultural heritage”, Cracow and Auschwitz-Birkenau, Poland (4 - 6 May 2005)

Message to the Third Summit of Heads of State and Government


The Ministers of Education of signatory States of the European Cultural Convention of the Council of Europe,

Gathered in Cracow and Auschwitz-Birkenau from 4 to 6 May 2005 for the Seminar “Teaching remembrance through cultural heritage",

1. Recall their fundamental commitment to mutual tolerance among peoples and citizens;

2. Reaffirm that Europe is built on the rejection of the exclusion, violence and crimes against humanity whose mark on the 20th century was both bodily and spiritual and whose consummate horror endures in the Shoah;

3. Appeal for a living remembrance of this tragedy, looking to the prevention of fresh outrages to humanity;

4. Stress the indispensable and essential value of history teaching for fulfilling the fundamental ambition to educate citizens for the prevention of evil;

5. Recall that the horror of the camps was the culmination of manifold intolerance and exclusion;

6. Urge the Heads of State and Government to exercise special vigilance as regards all discrimination whatever its nature;

7. Reaffirm their support for the fundamental principles of the Council of Europe set out in the European Convention on Human Rights, as the sole possible basis on which persons of all backgrounds and beliefs can live harmoniously together;

8. Invite the Heads of State and Government to adopt these conclusions and make them a reality by using every means at their disposal to support the educational action of information and prevention carried on for many years by the Council of Europe.

Note  Note 
1 Organised in the framework of the Standing Conferene of European Ministers of Education, Polish Chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe and the Project “Teaching Remembrance – Education for the prevention of crimes against humanity”.