THE victims of genocide have been remembered at a special commemoration by Richmondshire District Council.

The authority marked national Holocaust Memorial Day by raising a special flag at their new headquarters in Richmond, Mercury House.

The day is aimed at remembering the millions of people murdered or whose lives have been changed beyond recognition during the Nazi persecution and in subsequent genocides in Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia and Darfur.

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“It is important that we continue to remember those whose lives were lost or permanently scarred by these atrocities,” said council vice-chairman Coun Russell Lord, whose own family was affected by the Holocaust.

“The theme for 2014, ‘Journeys’, provided an opportunity for us to consider the journeys which those affected by genocide have been forced to make.

“HMD is about learning from the past to build a better future; it is about promoting equality, respect and understanding. “We hope people used the day to take a step towards creating a safer, better future.”

Members and staff watched the council chairman, Councillor Rob Johnson, raise the flag – the first time the new flag pole at Mercury House has been officially used.