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Poland's President Says He Will Sign Controversial Holocaust Bill

Poland's President Says He Will Sign Controversial Holocaust Bill”

But Duda said he would send the law, which has sparked an outcry in Israel, to Poland's highest court so it can assess whether it is in keeping with the Polish constitution.

The bill foresees jail terms of up to three years for mentioning the term "Polish death camps" and falsely attributing Nazi German crimes at camps such as Auschwitz, Treblinka, Belzec and Sobibor.

The legislation, which still needs the president's signature to take effect, was introduced by Poland's governing right-wing Law and Justice (PiS) party to stop people from erroneously describing Nazi German death camps as being Polish, simply due to their geographical location.

"It is not credible to engage in the denial", Hoenlein said Tuesday.

It has caused a diplomatic crisis with Israel, which fears it will enable Poland to whitewash the role of Poles who killed or denounced Jews during the German occupation of Poland during World War II.

Israel's Foreign Ministry said Tuesday that it would continue to communicate with Poland despite its reservations about the law. The law will enter into force after signing by Polish President Andrzej Duda.

The State Department had warned last week that such a law could have "repercussions" on Poland's relationship with the United States.

Israeli officials strongly objected to the law, arguing that it goes beyond precision in language. Polish officials note that a provision in the law exempts historic research and works of art.

Poland, which had Europe's biggest Jewish population when it was invaded by both Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union at the start of the Second World War, became ground zero for the "final solution", Hitler's plan to exterminate the Jews of Europe.

"We do not deny that there were cases of huge wickedness", he said in a speech.

The Polish government has provoked yet another worldwide crisis, this time by adopting a law that is ostensibly meant to combat the phrase "Polish death camps". The law has sparked aggressive disputes within Poland as well as overseas. After analyzing the situation and the bill, I have decided that I will sign it.

A leading figure in the Jewish American community has criticized Poland's handling of its new Holocaust law.

Jerzy Czerwinski, a senator with the ruling party, said on state radio Monday that he saw a "hidden agenda" in the opposition.

We've got more newsletters we think you'll find interesting. Many people were surprised when lawmakers suddenly approved it on January 26, the day before International Holocaust Remembrance Day .

He says that while Poles who helped save Jews during the Holocaust should be recognized, Poland should also acknowledge that many Poles were complicit in aiding the Nazis. He also said, however, that he would be sending the legislation to the nation's Constitutional Tribunal for further review.



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