Lithuanian President calls off Jerusalem visit, will attend Polish celebrations

Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda will not attend the World Holocaust Forum ceremonies of the 75th anniversary of the liberation of the Nazi German Auschwitz concentration camp organised in Jerusalem, it was announced on Tuesday.

"I will go to the symbolic place - the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp, to pay tribute to the millions of Jews who died during WWII in the Holocaust. I also bow to 200,000 Jews who were our countrymen," President Nauseda wrote in a press release on Tuesday.

"We must honour the memory of the victims of the Holocaust, strive for historical justice and oppose all forms of hatred with all our might," he stressed.

In the Israeli forum, Lithuania will be represented by Lower House Chairman Viktor Pranckietis, who was initially designated to participate in the Polish celebrations.

The Jerusalem ceremonies will take place on January 23. Polish President Andrzej Duda will not be taking part in then, as, unlike the heads of state of Russia, Germany, France and Britain, he was not invited to speak.

Delegations from a few dozen countries have announced their participation in the Polish commemorations on January 27 in Oświęcim, southern Poland.

The Nazi Germans killed at least 1.1 million people at Auschwitz, including about 960,000 people of Jewish descent.