Luxembourg

1 Recognition of the Genocide

1.1 Recognition, official texts

Luxembourg has officially recognised the Holocaust but not the Genocide of the Roma.

1.2 Data (camps locations, Remembrance places, measures etc.)

According to Ian Hancock, director of the Romani Archives and Documentation Centre at the University of Texas at Austin, almost the entire Roma population was killed in Luxembourg, i.e. 200 individuals.

Luxembourg has numerous local memorials, monuments and museums, where it commemorates the sufferings of the victims including the Jewish victims of the Second World War.

The Mémorial de la déportation is the former train station of Hollerich in Luxembourg city. It is the main memorial site of Luxembourg.

1.3 Specialised institution, commission, research centre etc., dealing with this issue

Centre for documentation and research on resistance (CDRR): In recent years, the Centre for Documentation and Research on Forced Recruitment (CDREF) has participated in a number of projects on the Holocaust, including historical conferences, meetings with survivors and visits to remembrance sites. Exhibitions presented as part of Holocaust Memorial Day have been financed by CDREF since 2012.

Luxembourg does not have a National Holocaust Museum but the Shoah is part of the two main museums on World War Two: • the "Mémorial de la Déportation" located in a former railway station in Luxembourg-Hollerich • the Musée national de la Résistance at Esch/alzette

1.4 Official initiatives (campaigns, actions, projects, commemoration days, museums)

Luxembourg observes 27th January as Holocaust Memorial Day. The day commemorates the victims of the Holocaust and, in doing so, seeks to prevent crimes against humanity in the future. The official day was established in 2009. Prior to this, 10th October had served as Holocaust Memorial Day, especially in schools, since 2003. On 27th January every year, a remembrance ceremony is held at the Monument to the Deportation, located at the former Hollerich deportation station (La Gare de Déportation de Hollerich), from where Jews and other victims of Nazi persecution were deported during the Nazi occupation. During the ceremony, a strong emphasis is placed on the fate of the Jewish population in Luxembourg in 1940. This is followed by a public discussion attended by internationally respected historians, survivors and partners of the Centre for Documentation and Research on Forced Recruitment (CDREF). The Monument to the Deportation has served as the venue for several exhibitions on the topic of the Holocaust.

2 Teaching about the Genocide of the Roma

2.1 Inclusion of the topic in the school curriculum

Pupils between 15 and 19 years of age learn about the Holocaust as part of their studies on World War II. Teaching about the Holocaust is not restricted to history classes but it is also addressed in religious, science and languages lessons. Still Luxembourg does not provide information on the teaching of the Genocide of the Roma.

2.2 Inclusion of the topic in the school textbooks

As Luxembourg does not have history books published in Luxembourg, but relies on foreign books (French, Belgian, Swiss, German) history teachers have a great liberty in developing the topic of the Holocaust.

2.3 Training of teachers and education professionals

Every year, optional teacher training sessions open to all teachers were offered, sometimes in close collaboration with the national history teachers’ association. The Ministry of Education also offers courses focusing on history and memory in particular. Every year some 20 to 50 teachers attend these training sessions.

Teachers learn about the sensitivities attached to teaching the Holocaust in teacher training programmes, including during Holocaust Memorial Day. The University of Luxembourg offers a number of seminars on the topic of history and memory with regard to World War II as part of its pedagogical trainings.

No specific training of teachers on the Genocide of the Roma has been reported yet.

2.4 Particular activities undertaken at the level of education institutions

Annual educational trips to Auschwitz are organised with the support of the Ministry of Education, during which 200 to 250 pupils visit the site and other camps. Trips are also organised to the camps at Natzweiler, Dachau, Buchenwald, Sachsenhausen and Bergen-Belsen. In 2010 the event dealt with the situation of the Roma and Sinti. The pupils met a Roma survivor from Auschwitz and had long exchanges with him. He gave a public conference as well. In addition to this national happening, different secondary schools organized activities such as visits to concentration camps, exhibitions, theatre performances for their pupils.

2.5 Remembrance day

For Holocaust Memorial Day, the Ministry of Education organizes a central commemorative event that gathers approximately 300 pupils, teachers and representatives of the government, parliament, patriotic associations and the Jewish community. On the evening before 27th January, a wreath is laid at a school in Luxembourg. Luxembourg reported that the event is intended to illustrate to students the consequences of not opposing anti-Semitic discourse and racist politics.

No official Remembrance Day for the Genocide of the Roma has been established in schools in Luxembourg.

3 Official contacts and resource persons

3.1 Responsible person in the Ministry of Education

Ministère de l'Éducation nationale, de l'Enfance et de la Jeunesse (MENJE)
29, rue Aldringen
L - 1118 Luxembourg
E-mail: info@men.lu
Telephone: (+352) 247-85100
Fax: (+352) 247-85113

3.2 Resource persons - list of experts and historians

4 Initiatives of the civil society

4.1 Relevant projects having a real impact on the people and/or the wide public

5 Point of view of the Roma community - including survivors' testimonies