Yad Vashem Chairman Dani Dayan responded Wednesday to remarks made by United Nations (UN) Secretary General António Guterres on Tuesday during the UN Security Council session.
"The slaughter of Jews by Hamas on October 7th was genocidal in its intents and immeasurably brutal in its form," Dayan said. "Part of why it differs from the Holocaust is because Jews have today a state and an army. We are not defenseless and at the mercy of others."
"However, it puts to test the sincerity of world leaders, intellectuals and influencers that come to Yad Vashem and pledge, 'Never Again.' Those who seek to 'understand,' look for a justifying context, do not categorically condemn the perpetrators, and do not call for the unconditional and immediate release of the abducted – fail the test."
"UN Secretary General António Guterres failed the test."
Guterres has accused Israel of violating international law in its retaliation against the Hamas terrorist organization in Gaza, calling an immediate truce that would leave the terrorist organization in power after it massacred over 1,400 Israelis in the worst mass killing of Jews since the Holocaust.
"I am deeply concerned about the clear violations of international humanitarian law that we are witnessing in Gaza. Let me be clear: No party to an armed conflict is above international humanitarian law," Guterres said during a Security Council meeting on the Gaza conflict.
"I have condemned unequivocally the horrifying and unprecedented 7 October act of terror by Hamas in Israel," he continued. "Nothing can justify the deliberate killing, injuring, and kidnapping of civilians, or the launching of rockets against civilian targets. All hostages must be treated humanely and released immediately and without conditions."
However, he stated that "it is important to also recognize the attack by Hamas did not happen in a vacuum. The Palestinian people have been subjected to 56 years of suffocating occupation. They have seen their lands steadily devoured by settlements and plagued by violence, their economies stifled, their people displaced and their homes demolished. Their hopes for a political solution to their plight have been vanishing."