Turkish Embassy in Wellington

News from the Turkish Foreign Ministry

Statement Of The Spokesperson Of The Ministry Of Foreign Affairs, Tanju Bilgiç, In Response To A Question Regarding The Commemoration Ceremony To Be Held At The Anniversary Of Sink Of “struma”, A Vessel Carrying Jewish Refugees During World War Ii , 23.02.2016

QA-7, 23 February 2016

The Struma, a vessel originating from the port of Constanza with 768 Jewish refugees on board, who were fleeing persecution in their countries and the Holocaust during the years of World War II, sank on 24 February 1942, by the torpedo attack of a Soviet submarine in international waters of the Black Sea after docking off the coast of Istanbul for 70 days. As a result, all the passengers of the vessel lost their lives except one survivor.

On the occasion of the 70th anniversary of the Holocaust, a commemoration ceremony had been held for those who lost their lives in Struma in line with the sensitive approach adopted by Turkey towards humanitarian tragedies.

With the consciousness that the lessons to be drawn from the Struma tragedy need to be passed to future generations and its place be maintained in the memories, also this year, on 24 February 2016, a commemoration ceremony will be held in İstanbul and a wreath will be left to the sea in memory of the people who lost their lives in Struma.

On this occasion, we respectfully commemorate all those who lost their lives during the Holocaust, which was one of the gravest disasters in history, and particularly those at this painful incident on 24 February 1942, while trying to flee from the Holocaust.