(Photo: Menahem Kahana/AFP/Getty Images)

Israel Comes to Standstill on Holocaust Remembrance Day (WATCH)

Israel on Thursday observed Holocaust Remembrance Day, known in the country as “Yom HaShoah.” The day is defined by somber ceremonies and a nation-wide siren that blares for two minutes to commemorate the six million Jews murdered by the Nazis during World War Two. The Israeli parliament in 1959 officially recognized Holocaust Remembrance Day, which is marked each year on the 27th day of the Hebrew calendar’s month of Nisan. On the eve of Yom HaShoah, all businesses shut down, flags on public buildings are flown at half-mast and virtually all non-emergency activities are suspended. This comes a week before Israel will mark “Yom Hazikaron,” which commemorates the nation’s fallen soldiers. The following day, on May 9, the Jewish state will celebrate the 71st anniversary of its independence.

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