Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has apologized on behalf of his country for rejecting Jewish refugees shortly before World War II. „We apologize for the heartlessness of Canada’s response,“ Trudeau said yesterday in Parliament in Ottawa.
Canada had refused to help, where it could have helped, and contributed to the „cruel fate“ of many people who were later murdered in Nazi concentration camps like Auschwitz.
After rejection returned to Europe
In his speech, Trudeau referred to the refugee ship „St. Louis „. The ship was struck in May 1939 with more than 900 Jews on board while fleeing Nazi persecution in Hamburg. The passengers were however neither in Cuba nor in the USA still in Canada left ashore.
The „St. Louis „had therefore to return to Europe, many of the Jews were later murdered by the Nazis. The wandering of the ship was later filmed in the drama „Journey of the Damned“.
„Time has not absolved Canada of its guilt or reduced the weight of shame,“ Trudeau said. The apology of his country was „long overdue“. He called on Canada to oppose alien hatred and anti-Semitism. Jews would still be victims of discrimination and violence. Earlier, the Prime Minister had met with one of the survivors of „St. Louis „met.