Turkey Boycotts Holocaust Conf.

A Yad Vashem Museum conference on Teaching the Holocaust in the Diaspora has opened in Jerusalem. Turkey called in to say, "We're not coming."

Hillel Fendel, | updated: 16:03

Holocaust memorial
Holocaust memorial
Israel news photo: Flash 90

A Yad Vashem Museum conference on Teaching the Holocaust in the Diaspora opened in Jerusalem on Saturday night with  39 countries are taking part – but Turkey is not one of them.

The Turkish delegation announced that it would boycott the event nearly two weeks ago, on the day of the flotilla clash between Israeli forces and Turkish-Muslim terror activists. Turkey has still not explained how the Mavi Marmara ship, on which it performed a security check, arrived in Israel with axes clubs, and slingshots aboard.

Some 200 people are taking part. The Turkish delegation was to have included representatives from the Foreign Ministry, Education Ministry, and the National Security Council, as well as two Ankara University professors.

Education Minister Gideon Saar, who was present for the opening sessions, said it was regrettable that Turkey had canceled its participation. “We are now witness to a  new type of anti-Semitism that focuses on delegitimizing the Jewish State,” Saar said.

Meanwhile, dozens of European countries have agreed to Israel’s suggestion to begin proceedings for the return of property stolen from Holocaust victims. At a conference in Prague last week, ministers and representatives from 43 countries agreed on the manner in which this would be carried out.