The Ixelles Communal Council has responded positively to the wish expressed by a multitude of associations to organise an annual day of remembrance. The day specifically honours the former French Health Minister and President of the European Parliament, Simone Veil. Taking place on Wednesday, this event will be held on the Esplanade of the European Parliament (also known locally as the mall).
The public ceremony, paying tribute to Simone Veil, has been organised on the joint initiative of the Association for the Memory of the Shoah (“AMS”), the Izieu Memorial Museum for Jewish Child Victims of the Holocaust and the Ixelles Communal Council. It will happen at 12 noon on the concourse bearing Veil’s name, as previously indicated on the Esplanade of the European Parliament.
Numerous associations are supporting this initiative, such as the Council of French-speaking Women in Belgium and even the European Citizen Platform. Marcel Zalc, the President of the AMS, states, “We are very pleased that this ceremony is taking place both this year, and in future years.”
Herself of the Jewish faith, Simone Veil was sent with her mother and one of her sisters to the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp, during the Second World War. The ceremony will also commemorate the memory of the 24,906 Belgian Jews sent to Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp during the war.
Simone Veil is known for tackling the legalisation of abortion as French Health Minister, and for having been the first female President to be elected to the European Parliament by universal suffrage in 1979.