Jewish groups dismayed over papal decision on 'Holocaust denier'

Vatican restores Society of Saint Pius X
American and British Jewish groups say they are shocked by a decision of Pope Benedict XVI to overturn the excommunication of a British bishop who has said the number of Jews killed during the Holocaust has been exaggerated.

The move is “a serious blow for Jewish-Vatican relations and a slap in the face of the late Pope John Paul II, who made such remarkable efforts to eradicate and combat anti-Semitism,” said Rabbi David Rosen, the international director of interreligious affairs for the New York–based American Jewish Committee.

After the international outcry, Benedict asserted at his daily audience at the Vatican on January 28 that “no one can deny” the Holocaust.

Stating his “full and unquestionable solidarity with our Jewish brothers,” the pope said he hoped the memory of the Holocaust “will induce humanity to reflect on the unpredictable power of hate when it conquers the heart of man.”


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