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Paris, 9 November 2017

Simon Wiesenthal Centre Director for International Relations, Dr. Shimon Samuels was invited to join an Honorary Committee of six diplomats from El Salvador, Hungary, Israel and Switzerland and representatives of CRIF (Council of French Jewish Institutions), the Memorial to the Shoah, Yad Vashem, Yahad in Unum, the Elie Wiesel Institute and the Women’s Co-operation Council, In Memory of Righteous Gentile, Carl Lutz. 

9 Nov. 2017
Left to right: Frederic Hayat, Shimon Samuels and Xavier Cornut.

Recognized as a "Righteous Gentile", this Swiss diplomat as Vice-Consul in Budapest, provided Hungarian Jews with protection certificates.  After a confrontation with Adolf Eichmann, the architect of the Holocaust, Lutz conceived of an elaborate stratagem to place 76 residential buildings in Budapest under diplomatic extraterritoriality, in which he housed thousands of families. Protecting these quarters from the SS, he is credited with saving 62,000 men, women and children from deportation to Auschwitz.

Nominated on three occasions for the Nobel Peace Prize, Carl Lutz has been honoured in Israel, Hungary, the United States, Germany and now in his own country Switzerland.

Samuels joined the other members of the Honorary Committee (see below) in the call for a plaque in Lutz's memory outside the Swiss Foreign Ministry in Berne.

M. Bernardino Regazzoni


Ambassadeur de Suisse en France

M. Takács, Szabolcs


Ambassadeur de Hongrie auprès de l'IRHA

Mme Carmen Maria  Gallardo Hernandez


Ambassadeur d'El Salvador

M. Georges Karoly


Ambassadeur de Hongrie en France

M. Marc Attali


Ministre plénipotentiaire Israel en France

M. Francis Kalifat


Président du CRIF

M. Olivier Cadic


Sénateur représentant les français de l'étranger

Mme Agnès Hirschi


Fille adoptive de Carl Lutz

M. Jacques Fredj


Mémorial de la Shoah

Yad Vachem


Yad Vashem

M. Shimon Samuels


Centre  Simon Wiesenthal

M. Patrick Desbois


Yahad in Unum

Mme Rebekka  Benesch


Conseillère de l’Ambassade de Suisse

M. Xavier Cornut


Fondation Carl Lutz

M. Raphy Marciano


Institut Elie Wiesel

Mme Evelyne Berdugo


Présidente Coopération féminine

In his thanks to the organisers: Frederic Hayat and Xavier Cornut of the Carl Lutz Foundation and Lutz's adoptive daughter Agnes Hirschi,  Samuels noted,
"having worked alongside the late Simon Wiesenthal for almost twenty years until his passing, I am certain that the plaque acknowledging the vital role of Carl Lutz for the Jewish people and as a universal example, would have brought great satisfaction to Simon.
It will also be applauded by his family and the 400,000 worldwide membership of the Simon Wiesenthal Centre".

Simon Wiesenthal had written the Preface to Theo Tschuy's biography of Carl Lutz, "Dangerous Diplomacy" which was distributed at the ceremony at the Rue Copernic Synagogue in Paris.