People visit the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial museum in Jerusalem, two days ahead of the World Holocaust Forum. (Photo by Ludovic Marin/AFP via Getty Images)

World Leaders Gather at Yad Vashem for Holocaust Memorial

US President Mike Pence and Russian President Vladimir Putin touched down in Israel on Thursday morning, joining dozens of other world leaders who are attending a Holocaust memorial at Yad Vashem. Titled “Remembering the Holocaust: Fighting Anti-Semitism,” the event, taking place from 13:30-16:40 local time, marks 75 years since the liberation of the Nazi-run extermination camp Auschwitz in January 1945. Pence and Putin will address the ceremony, in addition to the presidents of France and Germany, as well as Britain’s Prince Charles. Israeli President Reuven Rivlin and Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu will also give remarks at the Jewish state’s largest-ever diplomatic summit. Both Pence and Putin were to meet with Netanyahu in advance, their talks focusing on Iran’s nuclear program and interventionism in conflicts throughout the Middle East. Speaker of the US House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi, who is leading a small delegation of lawmakers, on Wednesday held a working meeting with her Israeli counterpart, Yuli Edelstein. “I’m not sure Israel would be what it is if not for our close ties with the US,” the Israeli legislator said. “Unfortunately, terrible anti-Semitism still exists and is rearing its head, but our friends in Congress do not only make declarations, they are taking steps to eradicate it.”

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