Polish bishop says ‘stolen Holocaust’ comments taken ‘out of context’

January 28, 2010

A senior Catholic bishop in Poland who was reported to have made controversial comments about the Holocaust has insisted his remarks were taken “out of context”.

The remarks purporting to have been made by Bishop Tadeusz Pieronek were published just hours before Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel’s prime minister, arrived in Poland on Monday to take part in commemorations to mark the 65th anniversary of the liberation of the death camp at Auschwitz on Wednesday.

Bishop Pieronek spoke to an Italian Catholic news website, Pontifex Roma, which alleged he told it Jews had “stolen” the tragedy of the Holocaust.

While stressing that the majority of people who died in Nazi Germany’s death camps were Jews, Bishop Pieronek is alleged to have attacked Jews for apparently claiming ownership of the slaughter when others who were killed included “Poles, Gypsies, Italians and Catholics”.

Bishop Pieronek said on Monday: “I have not seen the printed text of the interview, which I have given but have not authorised.

“But if I were to believe in what I hear from the media then it looks as though the final form of the interview… is full of vague statements.”

He explicitly denied saying that he had called the Holocaust a “Jewish invention”.

Source: Telegraph.