Today, during the 6th stage from Oswiecim
to Terma Bukowina Tatrzanska,
a 228.5-kilometer route, organizers of the 67th Tour de Pologne
wanted to pay homage and commemorate the victims of the Holocaust tragedy.
After leaving from Oswiecim, the city of peace, cyclists transferred to the former Auschwitz II Birkenau concentration camp, where the whole Tour de Pologne observed a minute of silence. One cyclist per country represented at the Tour de Pologne stood right in front of the camp, and left a white rose before the barbed wire fence. A sign left to remember, commemorate and never make the same mistakes again. Following this stop, the group moved to Auschwitz I, and orderly proceeded to walk past the concentration camp characterized by the sadly popular sentence “Arbeit macht frei” (working makes you free).
“Auschwitz was the theatre of one of the most tragic pages in the history of mankind, - explains TdP Director Czeslaw Lang -. With this commemoration we wanted to try and send a message of universal peace, equality, brotherhood and transnational solidarity. Those are fundamental values that are stronger than linguistic, ideological or religious barriers, and they are the basis of both sports as a whole and cycling. They are values that both sports and cycling can ad must help spread worldwide.”
This morning, before the stage started, all of the team staff members taking part to Tour de Pologne were given the chance to visit the Auschwitz buildings.