£2.1m for Auschwitz preservation

The British Government will contribute £2.1 million towards the preservation of the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp in Poland, it was announced today.

The camp became the largest site for the mass murder of Jews by the Nazi regime during the Second World War and stands as an enduring symbol of the Holocaust.

The funding for the Auschwitz-Birkenau Foundation is a joint contribution, primarily from the Department for Communities and Local Government and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and will be delivered over the next three years.

Speaking at the Jewish Museum in London, Communities Secretary Eric Pickles said the camp was an importance place of remembrance, which served to educate people about the horrors of the Holocaust.

Mr Pickles said: "It is our collective responsibility to ensure that Auschwitz-Birkenau stands as a perpetual reminder of the pain and destructive force of hate.

"We must ensure that the lessons from the Holocaust are taught today and to future generations."

Foreign Secretary William Hague said Auschwitz-Birkenau underlined "the horrific consequences of intolerance".

He added: "I am proud that the UK is able to play a part in commemorating the millions of victims who died there, educating future generations of the evils of that period in history and ensuring its preservation for many years to come."