HMD is held annually, and is a day to remember the millions of people killed in the Holocaust, under Nazi Persecution, and in the following genocides in Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia, and the ongoing genocide in Darfur.
Each year, the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust chooses a different theme to enable audiences on Holocaust Memorial Day to learn something new about the past.
Every theme is relevant to the Holocaust, Nazi Persecution and to subsequent genocide. Themes have the life stories of those who were murdered and those who survived at their heart, as well as the experiences of resisters, rescuers and witnesses.
The theme of HMD 2018 is The Power of Words. Spoken and written words from individuals, corporations, community organisations or the state, can have a huge impact, whether good or bad. HMD 2018 explores how language has been used in the past and how it is used in the present day.
HMD will focus on the impact that words had in the Holocaust and subsequent genocides, through propaganda used to incite hatred, through slogans written in resistance and through memoirs written to record what was going on.
On the day documentary films were shown and stories were read out to recognise the struggle and heartbreak of those caught up in genocides, and stories of how life has gone on after such tragedy. Memorial prayers were led by Reverend John Povey, Chair of West Lothian Faith Group and Lord Julian Goodman, Edinburgh Hebrew Congregation.
Leader of West Lothian Council, Lawrence Fitzpatrick, who opened the event, said: "West Lothian Council is proud to host a Holocaust Memorial Day event. West Lothian is a community where residents are educated about tolerance and acceptance, and Holocaust Memorial Day allows us to reflect on the trauma and loss and recognise the need for peace."
Executive councillor for culture and leisure, Dave King, added: "Holocaust Memorial Day is a powerful reminder that hatred, discrimination and racism can only lead to the downfall of society. We can all learn a lesson from Holocaust Memorial Day and continue to promote diversity and equality within West Lothian."
For more information on HMD visit Holocaust Memorial Day