The Elie Wiesel Foundation for Humanity

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ELIE WIESEL'S CHILDHOOD HOME NOW A HOLOCAUST MUSEUM

Take a Brief Look Inside Elie Wiesel's Childhood Home in Sighet


ELIE WIESEL AWARDED ISRAEL'S PRESIDENTIAL MEDAL OF DISTINCTION

President Peres presented Elie Wiesel the award for Wiesel's

"work on tolerance and preserving memory of Shoah"



ELIE AND MARION WIESEL RECEIVE THEODOR HERZL AWARD

The World Jewish Congress honored the Wiesels

with the award for their lifetime achievements

 

Left to right: Marion Wiesel, Hillary Rodham Clinton, Elie Wiesel, Ronald Lauder


THE 2013 ELIE WIESEL FOUNDATION PRIZE IN ETHICS ESSAY CONTEST

The Elie Wiesel Foundation and LRN Announce the 2013 Winners

Elie Wiesel Ethics Prize Awarded for Essay on Hurricane Sandy

 

UNITED STATES HOLOCAUST MEMORIAL MUSEUM 20TH ANNIVERSARY

Bill Clinton, Elie Wiesel Join Holocaust Survivors to Commemorate Museum's 20th Anniversary

 

 

FAITH IN THE MESSENGER

Faith in the messenger

On the 20th anniversary of the National Holocaust Memorial Museum, CNN Profiles sits down with Professor Wiesel.  Please listen here.

 

HOLOCAUST LESSONS NEVER TO BE FORGOTTEN

Elie Wiesel

   Wiesel:  Holocaust Lessons Never to Be Forgotten   

 

 The Emmy® Award-winning series  “SUPER SOUL SUNDAY” premieres an all-new episode ‘Oprah and Nobel Prize Winner Elie Wiesel: Living with an Open Heart’ on December 9 at 11am ET/PT on OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network

Oprah Winfrey sits down with Nobel Peace Prize winner and New York Times bestselling author Elie Wiesel. As the voice of the internationally-acclaimed holocaust memoir, Night, Elie was honored with the Nobel Peace Prize in 1986.

At age eighty-two, Elie was rushed into open heart surgery. During his conversation with Oprah, he shares his thoughts on love, regret, and abiding faith as he faced his own mortality. Detailing these experiences in his latest memoir, Open Heart, Elie discusses that the fears associated with his lifesaving operation allowed him to re-examine his career and deepen his devotion to his family. Plus, find out what Elie hopes will be the destiny of his life’s work.

 

ELIE WIESEL IS UP TO HIS NECK IN WORK

Professor Wiesel received the Nadav Peoplehood Award in Israel

 

ELIE WIESEL SURVIVES MADOFF WIPEOUT, HEART SURGERY, WITH NEW BOOKS AND BATTLE AGAINST RACISM

Elie Wiesel survivies Madoff wipeout, heart surgery

 

AN EVENING WITH ELIE WIESEL

Professor Wiesel spoke with students, alum, faculty, and community members at Barnard College focusing the discussion on the dangers of isolation.

 

WIESEL, JEWISH LEADERS RAP CHANGES TO CANADA'S REFUGEE POLICY

Nobel laureate Elie Wiesel joined a growing list of Jewish leaders who are calling on Canada to reverse changes to legislation that denies health care to refugee claimants.

 

ELIE WIESEL RENOUNCES HUNGARIAN AWARD IN PROTEST AT NAZI "WHITEWASH"

Nobel laureate condemns officials for honouring member of
Hungary's second world war far-right parliament

 

ELIE WIESEL TO HUNGARY: KEEP YOUR AWARD 

Elie Wiesel to Hungary: Keep your award 

 

ELIE WIESEL SPEAKS OUT AGAINST THE TRAGEDY UNFOLDING IN SYRIA

With CNN's Christiane Amanpour

 

 ELIE WIESEL  STATEMENT REGARDING MIKHAIL KHODORKOVSKY

Mikhail Khodorkovsky's scandalous verdict of a new fourteen year prison term is an insult to all of us who believe in justice and in the cause of human rights. It brings shame to Russia. If we ever needed proof that he is a political prsioner and that he was and remains a victim of Vladimir Putin's personal vendetta, it was given to us again now.

                                                            - Elie Wiesel

 

DAVID AXELROD MAKES RARE PUBLIC APPEARANCE

Joins Elie Wiesel at Conclusion of Nobel Laureates Conference

 

NEW YORK, NY, September 27: David Axelrod, Senior Adviser to President Obama and the chief architect of Obama’s 2008 campaign makes a rare public appearance on October 6 at 8 pm at 92nd Street Y.  Mr. Axelrod is joining Professor Elie Wiesel at the conclusion of the Conference of Nobel Laureates, hosted by the Elie Wiesel Foundation for Humanity in partnership with the 92Y. The Conference brings together Nobel Laureates, leaders in business and new media and journalists. The conversation between Mr. Axelrod and Professor Wiesel will be the Conference’s only public event. Professor Wiesel will share with Mr. Axelrod important insights from the Nobel Conference. From his unique perspective within the Obama White House, Mr. Axelrod will share his thoughts about how some of these ideas might be put into practice. The public will have the opportunity to ask questions of Mr. Axelrod and Professor Wiesel via Skype.

The Nobel Laureates Conference on October 6 is presented by the Elie Wiesel Foundation and 92nd Street Y, in partnership with Skype. Nobel Laureates in the fields of Economics, Physics, Chemistry, Medicine and Peace meet with 21st century innovators including Arianna Huffington, Irshad Manji, the director of NYU’s Moral Courage Project; and TheEconomist’s Matthew Bishop and Mashable’s Pete Cashmore.

Public Event

Who: David Axelrod and Elie Wiesel

When: Wednesday, October 6, 8 pm

Where: 92nd Street Y, 1395 Lexington Ave, New York, NY

Tickets: www.92Y.org/nobel

 

APPEAL FOR GILAD SHALIT:

For twelve days tens of thousands of Israeli citizens are marching to protest the continued captivity of Gilad Shalit. Following is a statement by Elie Wiesel in support of Gilad’s immediate release. We encourage everyone to get involved by contacting members of congress and government representatives about this urgent situation.

 

Gilad Shalit was kidnapped four long years ago and has been kept in secret isolation, causing pain and torment to his parents.

Four years of endless suffering and agony.

To the hostage, time itself is torture. It becomes an enemy. Filled with uncertainty, his time is different from ours. His waiting is not like ours. His minutes are longer than ours.

When will his Hamas captors realize that even terrorism must have limits? When will they allow the International Red Cross to visit him in his prison cell or underground hole? When will the civilized world raise its voice and demand Shalit’s release? When will NGOs make their outrage known? When will all good, decent and sensitive men and women mobilize their energy to put an end to this human scandal?

They must be made to realize that their silence only helps the jailer, never the prisoner.

What is at stake is our honor and our humanity.

 

                                                                     

                                                                                                 Elie Wiesel

 

FOR JERUSALEM:

As published in The International Herald Tribune, The Washington Post and The Wall Street Journal on April 16, 2010 and in The New York Times on April 18, 2010:

It was inevitable: Jerusalem once again is at the center of political debates and international storms. New and old tensions surface at a disturbing pace.  Seventeen times destroyed and seventeen times rebuilt, it is still in the middle of diplomatic confrontations that could lead to armed conflict. Neither Athens nor Rome has aroused that many passions.  

For me, the Jew that I am, Jerusalem is above politics.  It is mentioned more than six hundred times in Scripture—and not a single time in the Koran. Its presence in Jewish history is overwhelming. There is no more moving prayer in Jewish history than the one expressing our yearning to return to Jerusalem. To many theologians, it IS Jewish history, to many poets, a source of inspiration. It belongs to the Jewish people and is much more than a city, it is what binds one Jew to another in a way that remains hard to explain. When a Jew visits Jerusalem for the first time, it is not the first time; it is a homecoming. The first song I heard was my mother’s lullaby about and for Jerusalem. Its sadness and its joy are part of our collective memory.  

Since King David took Jerusalem as his capital, Jews have dwelled inside its walls with only two interruptions; when Roman invaders forbade them access to the city and again, when under Jordanian occupation, Jews, regardless of nationality, were refused entry into the old Jewish quarter to meditate and pray at the Wall, the last vestige of Solomon’s temple. It is important to remember: had Jordan not joined Egypt and Syria in the war against Israel, the old city of Jerusalem would still be Arab. Clearly, while Jews were ready to die for Jerusalem they would not kill for Jerusalem.   

Today, for the first time in history, Jews, Christians and Muslims all may freely worship at their shrines.   And, contrary to certain media reports, Jews, Christians and Muslims ARE allowed to build their homes anywhere in the city. The anguish over Jerusalem is not about real estate but about memory.

What is the solution? Pressure will not produce a solution. Is there a solution? There must be, there will be.  Why tackle the most complex and sensitive problem prematurely? Why not first take steps which will allow the Israeli and Palestinian communities to find ways to live together in an atmosphere of security.  Why not leave the most difficult, the most sensitive issue, for such a time?

Jerusalem must remain the world’s Jewish spiritual capital, not a symbol of anguish and bitterness, but a symbol of trust and hope. As the Hasidic master Rebbe Nahman of Bratslav said, “Everything in this world has a heart; the heart itself has its own heart.” 

Jerusalem is the heart of our heart, the soul of our soul.

                                                                        - Elie Wiesel

 

2009 NATIONAL HUMANITIES MEDAL AWARDED TO ELIE WIESEL:

President Barack Obama presented the 2009 National Humanities Medals to eight Americans for their outstanding achievements in history, literature, cultural philanthropy, and museum leadership. Elie Wiesel was awarded for “his unwavering commitment to preserving the memory of the Holocaust and its victims. He has fostered compassion and understanding through his writing, his leadership, and his relentless advocacy for human rights.” 

The medals, first awarded in 1989, were presented during a ceremony in the East Wing of the White House. After the ceremony, the medallists and their families and friends, joined the President and First Lady, Michelle Obama, in a reception in their honor.

-Washington, D.C., February 25th, 2010

IRAN OPEN LETTER 2:

As published in The New York Times on February 7, 2010 and The International Herald Tribune on February 9th, 2010:

DEAR PRESIDENT OBAMA, PRESIDENT SARKOZY, PRESIDENT MEDVEDEV, PRIME MINISTER BROWN AND C HANCELLOR MERKEL,

HOW LONG CAN WE STAND IDLY BY AND WATCH THE

SCANDAL IN IRAN UNFOLD?

            We the undersigned urgently appeal to you and the other leaders of the world, to use your prestige and power to put an end to this outrage. The situation in Iran is not improving; in fact, it is worsening every day. The cruel and oppressive regime of “Supreme Leader” Ali Khamenei and President Ahmadinejad, whose irresponsible and senseless nuclear ambitions threaten the entire world, continues to wage a shameless war against its own people. Human rights violations have now attained new levels of horror. Thousands of the regime’s political adversaries are being arrested, imprisoned, tortured, raped, and killed, many by hanging. Seyed Ali Mousavi, nephew of the opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi, has been assassinated. Former Foreign Minister Ibrahim Yazdi is among the detained. Human rights activist Emad Baghi and so many other dissidents are behind bars. The Basij militia and police continue to fire indiscriminately on unarmed, peaceful demonstrators. According to the press, riot tanks have appeared in the capital.

            And yet, overcoming fear and ignoring threats, tens of thousands of freedom-loving men and women, many of them young students, are marching in the streets shouting their faith in democracy and liberty. They must know that we are on their side.

IN THE NAME OF CONSCIENCE AND HONOR, WE APPEAL TO THE LEADERS OF THE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY TO DO WHAT IS NEEDED TO HELP THESE COURAGEOUS FIGHTERS WHO RISK THEIR LIVES STANDING UP TO THEIR GOVERNMENT’S IMMORAL, INHUMAN AND ILLEGAL OFFICIAL POLICY.

            More forceful and unequivocal condemnations of Tehran’s repulsive practices must be heard from Washington and Paris, Moscow, London and Berlin, the Security Council and important NGO’s. Harsher sanctions must be imposed. And yes, concrete measures must be taken to protect this new nation of dissidents, so that their sacrifice is not – and will not – be in vain.

            All of us who care must offer our full support and solidarity to the brave people of Iran.

            They deserve nothing less.

Robert J. Aumann, Nobel Prize, Economics (2005)

Richard Axel, Nobel Prize, Medicine (2004)

Baruj Benacerraf, Nobel Prize, Medicine (1980)

Paul Berg, Nobel Prize, Chemistry (1980)

Günter Blobel, Nobel Prize, Medicine (1999)

Thomas R. Cech, Nobel Prize, Chemistry (1989)

Aaron Ciechanover, Nobel Prize, Chemistry (2004)

Georges Charpak, Nobel Prize, Physics (1992)

ClaudeCohen-Tannoudji, Nobel Prize, Physics (1997)

Edmond H. Fischer, Nobel Prize, Medicine (1992)

Val Fitch, Nobel Prize, Physics (1980)

Jerome I. Friedman, Nobel Prize, Physics (1990)

Donald A. Glaser, Nobel Prize, Physics (1960)

Sheldon Glashow, Nobel Prize, Physics (1979)

David J. Gross, Nobel Prize, Physics (2004)

Roger Guillemin, Nobel Prize, Medicine (1977)

James Heckman, Nobel Prize, Economics (2000)

Alan Heeger, Nobel Prize, Chemistry (2000)

Dudley R. Herschbach, Nobel Prize, Chemistry (1986)

Avram Hershko, Nobel Prize, Chemistry (2004)

Roald Hoffmann, Nobel Prize, Chemistry (1981)

David H. Hubel, Nobel Prize, Medicine (1981)

Eric R. Kandel, Nobel Prize, Medicine (2000)

Walter Kohn, Nobel Prize, Chemistry (1998)

Harold W. Kroto, Nobel Prize, Chemistry (1996)

Finn E. Kydland, Nobel Prize, Economics (2004)

Leon M. Lederman, Nobel Prize, Physics (1988)

Eric S. Maskin, Nobel Prize, Economics (2007)

Craig C. Mello, Nobel Prize, Medicine (2006)

George A. Olah, Nobel Prize, Chemistry (1994)

Douglas D. Osheroff, Nobel Prize, Physics (1996)

John C. Polanyi, Nobel Prize, Chemistry (1986)

Stanley Prusiner, Nobel Prize, Medicine (1997)

Robert C. Richardson, Nobel Prize, Physics (1996)

Richard J. Roberts, Nobel Prize, Medicine (1993)

Thomas C. Schelling, Nobel Prize, Economics (2005)

Jens C.Skou, Nobel Prize, Chemistry (1997)

Wole Soyinka, Nobel Prize, Literature (1986)

Klaus von Klitzing, Nobel Prize, Physics (1985)

John Walker, Nobel Prize, Chemistry (1997)

Steven Weinberg, Nobel Prize, Physics (1979)

Elie Wiesel, Nobel Prize, Peace (1986)

Betty Williams, Nobel Prize, Peace (1976)

Jody Williams, Nobel Prize, Peace (1997)

 

UNESCO VOTE:

On Irina Bokova's election as Director General of UNESCO:

"UNESCO has escaped a scandal, a moral disaster.  Mr. Hosni did not deserve the job, he does not deserve this honor.  This is not someone, in my opinion, who should have even been a candidate for this position." 

                                                                          -Elie Wiesel, September 22nd, 2009

 

SENATOR EDWARD KENNEDY'S PASSING:

"Together, with our nation, and the whole world, The Elie Wiesel Foundation mourns the passing of Ted Kennedy.  Extraordinary legislator and statesman, he was the most articulate and passionate humanist in the U.S. Senate.  I vividly recall my conversations with him on vital issues and events and their moral implications.  He was a true leader.  We miss him and we shall never forget him."

                                                                           -Elie Wiesel, August 26th, 2009

 

 

IRAN OPEN LETTER:

As published in The New York Times on August 3rd, 2009 and The International Herald Tribune on August 12th, 2009:

AN OPEN LETTER

 

   

To Shirin Ebadi

and to All the dissidents --

the brave men and women of Iran:

 

Do not feel abandoned. 

Do not lose hope. 

The world knows that its physical and spiritual survival is linked to yours.  

We, the undersigned Nobel Laureates, strongly condemn the flagrant human rights violations in the wake of the recent presidential election in Iran.

We deplore the violent and oppressive tactics the current regime is using to dissuade protestors from expressing their right to free speech.  Your election was shamelessly tampered with and your human rights disregarded. We are outraged by your government’s denial of basic liberties to its people, such as detaining large groups of professors, students and innocent civilians, and denying proper funeral services to victims of its violence. These events, and the decision to ban all international media from covering these events, are blatant violations of the democratic principles your government claims to uphold.

We are well aware that throughout the long and glorious history of the Iranian civilization, your ancestors have often stood firmly against both interference from without and repression from within. Today, once again, you are fighting for a just cause.

We urge President Obama and the world’s political leadership to support, with all means at their disposal, the people of Iran, who deserve to have their votes counted, their voices heard, and their dignity respected.

 

Richard Axel, Nobel Prize, Medicine (2004)

Baruj Benacerraf, Nobel Prize, Medicine (1980)

Paul Berg, Nobel Prize, Chemistry (1980)

Günter Blobel, Nobel Prize, Medicine (1999)

Mario R. Capecchi, Nobel Prize, Medicine (2007)

Aaron Ciechanover, Nobel Prize, Chemistry (2004)

Stanley Cohen, Nobel Prize, Medicine (1986)

ClaudeCohen-Tannoudji, Nobel Prize, Physics (1997)

Elias James Corey, Nobel Prize, Chemistry (1990)

Robert F. Curl Jr., Nobel Prize, Chemistry (1996)

John B. Fenn, Nobel Prize, Chemistry (2002)

Edmond H. Fischer, Nobel Prize, Medicine (1992)

Jerome I. Friedman, Nobel Prize, Physics (1990)

Donald A. Glaser, Nobel Prize, Physics (1960)

Sheldon Glashow, Nobel Prize, Physics (1979)

David J. Gross, Nobel Prize, Physics (2004)

Roger Guillemin, Nobel Prize, Medicine (1977)

Leland H. Hartwell, Nobel Prize, Medicine (2001)

Dudley R. Herschbach, Nobel Prize, Chemistry (1986)

Avram Hershko, Nobel Prize, Chemistry (2004)

Roald Hoffman, Nobel Prize, Chemistry (1981)

Tim Hunt, Nobel Prize, Medicine (2001)

Daniel Kahneman, Nobel Prize, Economics (2002)

Eric R. Kandel, Nobel Prize, Medicine (2000)

William S. Knowles, Nobel Prize, Chemistry (2001)

Roger D. Kornberg, Nobel Prize, Chemistry (2006)

Harold W. Kroto, Nobel Prize, Chemistry (1996)

Finn E. Kydland, Nobel Prize, Economics (2004)

Eric S. Maskin, Nobel Prize, Economics (2007)

John Mather, Nobel Prize, Physics (2006)

Craig C. Mello, Nobel Prize, Medicine (2006)

Marshall W. Nirenberg, Nobel Prize, Medicine (1968)

George A. Olah, Nobel Prize, Chemistry (1994)

John C. Polanyi, Nobel Prize, Chemistry (1986)

Stanley Prusiner, Nobel Prize, Medicine (1997)

Robert C. Richardson, Nobel Prize, Physics (1996)

Richard J. Roberts, Nobel Prize, Medicine (1993)

Heinrich Rohrer, Nobel Prize, Physics (1986)

Jens C.Skou, Nobel Prize, Chemistry (1997)

Hamilton O. Smith, Nobel Prize, Medicine (1978)

Wole Soyinka, Nobel Prize, Literature (1986)

Joseph H. Taylor Jr., Nobel Prize, Physics (1993)

Bishop Desmond Tutu, Nobel Prize, Peace (1984)

Betty Williams, Nobel Prize, Peace (1976)

Elie Wiesel

Nobel Prize, Peace ( 1986)

 

TAMIL PEOPLE STATEMENT:

Wherever minorities are being persecuted we must raise our voices to protest.  According to reliable sources, the Tamil people are being disenfranchised and victimized by the Sri Lanka authorities.  This injustice must stop.  The Tamil people must be allowed to live in peace and flourish in their homeland.

- Elie Wiesel, June 30th 2009                

 

BUCHENWALD VISIT:

On June 5th, Elie Wiesel joined President Barack Obama and German Chancellor Angela Merkel at Buchenwald Concentration Camp in Weimar, Germany.

  It is estimated that 56,000 people died at Buchenwald before its liberation in 1945. Professor Wiesel was imprisoned there, and his father was among those who perished.

“I’ve never traveled to one of the concentration camps, but this one has a personal connection to me,” President Obama said in a news conference. “It’s not only that I know Elie Wiesel and have read about his writings, it’s also that – and I’ve stated this before – that my grandfather’s – my grandmother’s brother was one – was part of the units that first liberated the camp.”

After touring the camp grounds and laying flowers on a memorial, each took a few moments to address the crowd.  Professor Wiesel addressed an earlier speech by President Obama, where he urged a peaceful resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

“In those times, it was human to be inhuman,” he said. “And now the world has learned, I hope. And of course this hope includes so many of what now would be your vision for the future, Mr. President. A sense of security for Israel, a sense of security for its neighbors, to bring peace in that place.

“The time must come. It’s enough – enough to go to cemeteries, enough to weep for oceans. It’s enough. There must come a moment – a moment of bringing people together.”

For a complete transcript of Professor Wiesel’s speech, see below:

"Mr. President, Chancellor Merkel, Bertrand, ladies and gentlemen. As I came here today it was actually a way of coming and visit my father's grave -- but he had no grave. His grave is somewhere in the sky. This has become in those years the largest cemetery of the Jewish people.

The day he died was one of the darkest in my life. He became sick, weak, and I was there. I was there when he suffered. I was there when he asked for help, for water. I was there to receive his last words. But I was not there when he called for me, although we were in the same block; he on the upper bed and I on the lower bed. He called my name, and I was too afraid to move. All of us were. And then he died. I was there, but I was not there.

And I thought one day I will come back and speak to him, and tell him of the world that has become mine. I speak to him of times in which memory has become a sacred duty of all people of good will -- in America, where I live, or in Europe or in Germany, where you, Chancellor Merkel, are a leader with great courage and moral aspirations.

What can I tell him that the world has learned? I am not so sure. Mr. President, we have such high hopes for you because you, with your moral vision of history, will be able and compelled to change this world into a better place, where people will stop waging war -- every war is absurd and meaningless; where people will stop hating one another; where people will hate the otherness of the other rather than respect it.

But the world hasn't learned. When I was liberated in 1945, April 11, by the American army, somehow many of us were convinced that at least one lesson will have been learned -- that never again will there be war; that hatred is not an option, that racism is stupid; and the will to conquer other people's minds or territories or aspirations, that will is meaningless.

I was so hopeful. Paradoxically, I was so hopeful then. Many of us were, although we had the right to give up on humanity, to give up on culture, to give up on education, to give up on the possibility of living one's life with dignity in a world that has no place for dignity.

We rejected that possibility and we said, no, we must continue believing in a future, because the world has learned. But again, the world hasn't. Had the world learned, there would have been no Cambodia and no Rwanda and no Darfur and no Bosnia.

Will the world ever learn? I think that is why Buchenwald is so important -- as important, of course, but differently as Auschwitz. It's important because here the large -- the big camp was a kind of international community. People came there from all horizons -- political, economic, culture. The first globalization essay, experiment, were made in Buchenwald. And all that was meant to diminish the humanity of human beings.

You spoke of humanity, Mr. President. Woe unto us, in those times, it was human to be inhuman. And now the world has learned, I hope. And of course this hope includes so many of what now would be your vision for the future, Mr. President. A sense of security for Israel, a sense of security for its neighbors, to bring peace in that place. The time must come. It's enough -- enough to go to cemeteries, enough to weep for oceans. It's enough. There must come a moment -- a moment of bringing people together.

And therefore we say anyone who comes here should go back with that resolution. Memory must bring people together rather than set them apart. Memories here not to sow anger in our hearts, but on the contrary, a sense of solidarity that all those who need us. What else can we do except invoke that memory so that people everywhere who say the 21st century is a century of new beginnings, filled with promise and infinite hope, and at times profound gratitude to all those who believe in our task, which is to improve the human condition.

A great man, Camus, wrote at the end of his marvelous novel, The Plague: "After all," he said, "after the tragedy, nevertheless...there is more in the human being to celebrate than to denigrate." Even that can be found as truth -- painful as it is -- in Buchenwald.

Thank you, Mr. President, for allowing me to come back to my father's grave, which is still in my heart."

 


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