Justin Trudeau, the Prime Minister of Canada has formally apologized on November 8 on Wednesday for the nation’s 1939 refusal to admit a ship carrying over 900 Jewish refugees.
Adding that more will be done by the country to protect Canadian Jews from violence.
In May 1939, St Louis left Hamburg in search for a safe haven from harassment by Nazi Germany.
After Canada and other nations rebuffed, the ship was forced to return to Europe, where over 250 passengers died in Nazi death camps.
In the House of Commons, PM Trudeau told, “We apologise to the 907 German Jews aboard the St. Louis, as well as their families.”
“We are sorry for the callousness of Canada’s response. We are sorry for not apologising sooner,” added Trudeau.
During Trudeau’s parliamentary address, he said, “Jewish Canadians “are understandably feeling vulnerable” and there have been calls “to protect synagogues and other places that are at risk of hate-motivated crimes.”
The head of the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs, Shimon Koffler Fogel applauded the ‘historic apology’ by Trudeau and his promise to increase security measures for Jewish institutions.
Justin Trudeau has made a number of apologies for the historic failings by Canada.
Previously, Trudeau met with the only surviving Canadian passenger from the ship, Ana Maria Gordon and her family and talked about the need to fight anti-semitism.