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Press Release - Formal apology to Alderney by IHRA's Dr Gilly Carr - 23.10.23

Press Release
Date: 23rd October 2023
Issued at 08:30 hours

Formal apology to Alderney by IHRA's Dr Gilly Carr.

Dr Gilly Carr, the Channel Islands representative for the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA), has formally apologised for her comments that the Alderney community was "hostile" towards memorialising Nazi atrocities in World War II.

Dr Carr initially apologised for her remarks through the media but in a subsequent letter to the States of Alderney, she wrote:

"I am writing to offer a full and sincere apology to you, the States Members and the people of Alderney for the offence I have caused through my poor choice of words in the seminar at which I spoke several months ago. I deeply regret the harm I have caused to the reputation of the Island and relationships with those outside Alderney."

As a result of Dr Carr's offending comments, the Policy & Finance Committee (P&F) had no option but to rescind its 2019 decision to endorse her appointment as Alderney representative for IHRA matters. Sally Sealey, Deputy Head of the UK Delegation to IHRA, has agreed to be Alderney's primary contact instead.

P&F has confirmed it will comply with the IHRA Holocaust Charter as far as the Island's limited resources permit. Among P&F decisions agreed earlier this year is the erection of information boards at various sites around the Island. An information board at Lager Sylt near the Airport is already in place.

Meanwhile, planning applications for information boards have been submitted for additional sites at Lager Helgoland, Lager Nordeney, Lager Borkrum, the Russian Cemetery and the Hospital Bunker entrance in Longis Road.

In July, P&F recognised the significance of the UK Government Inquiry into the deaths on Alderney during World War II. At the time, States of Alderney President William Tate noted: "As an island our priority is to show our respect for those who suffered and died here, however many there were."