GENEVA, Jan. 26 (Xinhua) -- UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet on Wednesday urged the international community to stand up against antisemitism, ahead of International Holocaust Remembrance Day on Jan. 27.
"Today, racism and xenophobia are rising sharply. Violent attacks on Jewish sites and antisemitic incidents have been reported in many countries," Bachelet said in a statement.
Governments and social media platforms have a special role to play in tackling incitement to hatred, she added.
During the pandemic, certain antisemitic conspiracy theories have attributed responsibility for COVID-19 to Jews, and many public figures have minimized, distorted and weaponized the Holocaust in statements attacking public health measures.
"As they were in the 1930s, lies, hatred, scapegoating and dehumanization are on the rise - gravely threatening our social fabric today," Bachelet warned.
"We need to push back against hatred. We need to stand up for the truth - including the fundamental truth of our human equality and universal rights as human beings."
Also on Wednesday, a group of UN human rights experts issued a joint statement reiterating calls to combat antisemitism, and all forms of religious and racial bigotry.
According to the UN experts, historically high levels of antisemitism were documented in 2021.
The International Holocaust Remembrance Day marks the liberation of the Auschwitz concentration camp by the Soviet Army on Jan. 27, 1945.
According to estimates, at least 1.1 million people lost their lives at the camp, which was established by Nazi Germany in Poland in 1940. ■