A monument of gratitude for the rescue of the Bulgarian Jews from the Holocaust has been unveiled in the Black Sea city of Bourgas, with the ambassador of Israel, Irit Lilian, in attendance.
Ambassador Lilian took part in initiatives in Bourgas on the eve of Yom HaShoah, the day of mourning for the more than six million Jews murdered by the Nazi regime in the Holocaust.
In 2018, Bulgaria marks 75 years since the rescue of the Bulgarian Jews, and the deportation of 11 343 Jews from the “new lands” under Bulgarian administration in northern Greece and Yugoslavia, who were murdered in Treblinka.
In Bourgas, the book “75 Years. Unforgettable Faces of the Rescue,” published by the Organization of the Jews in Bulgaria “Shalom” was presented. The book tells the stories of individual ordinary Bulgarians who courageously played a part in the rescue of Bulgarian Jews.
As part of the initiatives in Bourgas, organised by the Alef Centre for Bulgarian-Jewish co-operation, ambassador Lilian presented the grand prize in Alef’s literary competition, held for the fifth year, on the theme “who saves a life, saves a universe”. The prize went to Monika Mitova, a pupil at a school in Blagoevgrad.
Ambassador Lilian also opened an exhibition “Beyond Duty”, dedicated to diplomats who saved Jews from the Holocaust and who have been recognised by the Yad Vashem World Holocaust Centre in Jerusalem as Righteous Among the Nations.