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Poland seeks to assure wary U.S. as Holocaust law takes effect

14:15, Thursday, 01 March, 2018
Poland seeks to assure wary U.S. as Holocaust law takes effect

A top Polish official is assuring his American counterparts in Washington that “nothing” will happen when a widely-criticized law takes effect Thursday that would criminalize assertions Poland bears any responsibility for Holocaust atrocities.

Poland’s Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister Marek Magierowski told reporters in Washington that the country is determined to de-escalate tensions between Poland and Israel and U.S. created by the law, which imposes jail terms of as much as three years for falsely suggesting Poles were complicit in the Holocaust.

The issue of the Holocaust, and responsibility for it, is a sensitive one in Poland. President Andrzej Duda earlier this month in signing the law declared his countrymen shouldn’t be "slandered" over Nazi atrocities on their soil. Poland’s U.S. embassy regularly seeks corrections when American media refer to "Polish" concentration camps, instead insisting they be referred to as German Nazi camps in occupied Poland.

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