Mr. Li Huaxin, Consul-General of China in Sydney, spoke to congratulate the launch of the exhibition, emphasising its significance in celebrating peace and justice on the occasion of the 70th anniversary of victory of the World Anti-Fascist War.
Mr. Yan Jianping, Director of Hongkou District People’s Congress, and Mr. Norman Seligman, CEO of the Sydney Jewish Museum, reviewed the history of the coexistence of and mutual assistance between Shanghai residents and Jewish refugees during the Second World War, both highly complimenting the solid relationship that developed between these two peoples in that particular period of time.
In addition, on behalf of the former Shanghailanders and descendants of Jewish refugees, Mr. Fred Antman and Ms. Martine Brieger both shared real experiences and touching stories of their families, through which people could achieve a vivid picture of what happened during the wartime.
At the end of the opening ceremony, Ms. Brieger generously donated 20 pieces of historical documents and artefacts, which used to belong to her father and grandfather, to the Shanghai Jewish Refugees Museum. A certificate that issued by the Museum was also awarded to Ms. Martine Brieger.
The opening ceremony also gathered together 6 former Jewish Shanghailanders who are now at their eighties and nineties and their families. Among them, 96-year-old Kurt Mosberg recounted how things were like when his parents ran the famous White Horse Inn during refuge in Shanghai, providing a valuable input into the reenactment efforts of the inn by Shanghai Jewish Refugee Museum.
The exhibition of “Jewish Refugees and Shanghai” received tremendous support from both Sydney Jewish Museum and Confucius Institute of the University of Sydney. On completion of the tour in Sydney, the exhibition will later travel to the Jewish Holocaust Centre in Melbourne in August 2015. This exhibition was also previously held in Germany, Israel, the United States and Hungary.
CCTV, Xinhua News Agency, Phoenix Satellite Television, People’s Daily Online, and other local media covered the opening ceremony.