New York – February 27, 2009 – AJC welcomed a Vatican statement rejecting remarks by Bishop Richard Williamson which he billed as an “apology” for his advocacy of Holocaust denial.
“The Vatican clearly understands the critical issue here,” said AJC Executive Director David A. Harris. “Williamson still refuses to acknowledge the Holocaust as a historical fact. Until he explicitly says otherwise, he remains in the camp of the Holocaust deniers. He is not fooling anyone, least of all the Vatican.”
Williamson, who was expelled from Argentina earlier this week, said yesterday that he regretted the “hurt” which his comments denying the Holocaust had caused “to survivors and relatives of victims of injustice under the Third Reich.” However, Father Federico Lombardi, the chief Vatican spokesman, said Williamson's statement "does not seem to respect the conditions" set forth by the Vatican on February 4, when it ordered Williamson to "in an absolutely unequivocal and public way distance himself from his positions" regarding the Holocaust.