Kings, princes, presidents, prime ministers, foreign ministers will converge on Jerusalem this week for the Fifth World Holocaust Forum to commemorate the 75th Anniversary of the Liberation of Auschwitz.
The race for hotel rooms has been frenetic and the prestige hotels have mainly been booked on a “first come first served” basis with a few exceptions.
The King David Hotel lobby is bedecked with the flags of many nations. The Irish flag was removed when Ireland backed out of this significant event. The Irish Government has a tradition of blundering their relationship with Israel.
Another nation not sending its top leader is Poland. This is partly due to a disagreement with Israel over the Polish refusal to admit that many Poles not only assisted the Germans but killed Jews and took their properties in the aftermath of the war.
French President, Emmanuel Macron will be staying in the King David Hotel.
Britain’s Prince Charles will also he hosted at the King David Hotel.
Russian President Vladimir Putin will be staying at the David Citadel Hotel.
Because the American delegation were late in confirming their attendance, both Vice President Pence and Speaker of the House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi, will both be staying at the Crowne Plaza Hotel.
The theme of the event will be ““Remembering the Holocaust: Fighting Antisemitism.”
Auschwitz was liberated by the Red Army on 27 January, 1945. There were 7,000 survivors in the camp, mostly sick and dying.
An estimated 1,300,000 men, women and children were deported to Auschwitz between 1940-1945. Of these, at least 1,100,000 were murdered.
The Fifth World Holocaust Forum will take place at Yad Vashem and Israel’s President Rivlin will host 40 of the world leaders at a dinner and discussion at the President’s Residence.
The list of world leaders attending include;
US Vice President Mike Pence
US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi
President of France Emmanuel Macron
President of Austria Alexander Van der Bellen
Governor-General of Canada Julie Payette
Governor-General of Australia David Hurley
President of Russia Vladimir Putin
Prince Charles of Britain
King of the Netherlands Willem-Alexander
King Felipe VI of Spain
President of Italy Sergio Mattarella
President of Slovenia Borut Pahor
President of Germany Frank-Walter Steinmeier
President of Hungary János Áder
President of Greece Prokopis Pavlopoulos
Prime Minister of Sweden Stefan Löfven
President of Iceland Guðni Th. Jóhannesson
President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zolenskyy
President of Cyprus Nicos Anastasiades
President of Lithuania Gitanas Nausėda
Crown Prince Haakon of Norway
Prime Minister of Denmark Mette Frederiksen
President of Finland Sauli Niinistö
President of Portugal Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa
President of Bulgaria Rumen Radev
President of Romania Klaus Iohannis
President of Slovakia Zuzana Čaputová
Prime Minister of the Czech Republic Andrej Babiš
President of Albania Ilir Meta
President of Armenia Armen Sarkissian
President of Georgia Salome Zourabichvili
Speaker of the Latvian Parliament Ināra Mūrniece
President of Moldova Igor Dodon
Minister of State of Monaco Serge Telle
Chairman of the House of Representatives of Belarus
President of Croatia Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović
President of Serbia Aleksandar Vučić
President of Bosnia and Herzegovina Željko Komšić
Grand Duke Henri of Luxembourg
President of Macedonia Stevo Pendarovski
President of Montenegro Milo Đukanović
President of the European Council Charles Michel
President of the European Parliament David Sassoli
Vatican Representative Kurt Koch.
Barry Shaw is a regular contributor to Blitz and International Public Diplomacy Director, Israel Institute for Strategic Studies