Family of Yad Vashem’s first Arab honoree rejects prize for saving Jews

Yad Vashem in Jerusalem. Credit: Wikimedia Commons.

( The family of Egyptian physician Dr. Mohamed Helmy, the first Arab to receive Yad Vashem’s “Righteous Among the Nations” designation recognizing non-Jews who risked their lives during the Holocaust to save Jews, has rejected the honor.

In Germany, Helmy helped 21-year-old Anna Boros (later Gutman), his family friend, avoid Nazi deportations. He also helped save Gutman’s mother, stepfather, and grandmother. Yad Vashem was to honor him posthumously.

“If any other country offered to honor Helmy, we would have been happy with it,” Mervat Hassan, the wife of Helmy’s great-nephew, told The Associated Press.


Posted on October 20, 2013 .