ADL: Romanian Government Minister Should Apologize For Denying Holocaust

New York, NY, August 8, 2012 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today urged the Romanian government to demonstrate its commitment to fighting anti-Semitism by having a newly-appointed minister apologize for previous Holocaust denial and by improving its law against fascist and racist organizations.

Dan Sova, who was appointed Romania's Minister of Parliamentary Relations on August 6, made public comments in March denying the mass killing of Jews in Iasi in 1941 and stating that "no Jew suffered on Romanian territory" during World War II. Mr. Sova later expressed regret that his statement was misunderstood, but has yet to apologize.

"It is imperative that Mr. Sova make a full and clear public apology for the comments he made in March denying the Holocaust," said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director. "A public apology by Mr. Sova and his proactive engagement in reforming the law prohibiting fascist and racist organizations will make clear to all that he and the Romanian government are committed to fighting anti-Semitism."

In a letter to Prime Minister Victor Ponta, ADL urged the government to have Mr. Sova make "a more substantial and lasting impact by moving from words to deeds" by reforming the law against fascist and racist organizations, the use of their symbols, the glorification of their leaders, and Holocaust denial to enable more effective prosecutions.

After Mr. Sova made the comments, he was removed from his role as spokesperson for the Social Democratic Party and sent on a three-day study tour to the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum.

ADL has an affiliate in Romania, "MCA Romania - The Center for Monitoring and Combating Anti-Semitism in Romania."

ADL is the world’s leading anti-hate organization. Founded in 1913 in response to an escalating climate of anti-Semitism and bigotry, its timeless mission is to protect the Jewish people and to secure justice and fair treatment for all. Today, ADL continues to fight all forms of hate with the same vigor and passion. A global leader in exposing extremism, delivering anti-bias education, and fighting hate online, ADL is the first call when acts of anti-Semitism occur. ADL’s ultimate goal is a world in which no group or individual suffers from bias, discrimination or hate.