A man who is believed to have compared Covid-19 restrictions in Victoria to the Holocaust while wearing what appears to be a replica Nazi concentration camp uniform has sparked outrage.
Footage of the man in the Melbourne CBD on Saturday holding up a "history repeats" sign was sent to the Anti-Defamation Commission, who said there is "no equivalence" to public health measures aimed at saving lives to the Holocaust.
"Nothing in Australia comes even close to the indescribable atrocities carried out on an industrial scale by the Nazis, and to suggest that we are on the road to Auschwitz is beyond words and divorced from reality," chairman of the ADC, Dvir Abramovich said in a statement.
The footage — filmed by a woman who has Holocaust survivors in her family — shows the man standing on Flinders St with the sign wearing striped blue pyjamas.
The woman told Mr Abramovich she and a friend approached the man holding the banner and told him that he is an "absolute disgrace" for comparing Covid measures to the Holocaust.
“No, Victoria is not becoming Nazi Germany and those opposing the vaccination mandate and proposed pandemic laws must stop with their ugly tactics," Mr Abramovich said.
"There is no equivalence between public health measures, laws and vaccinations aimed at saving lives to the Holocaust, in which six million Jews and millions of others were slaughtered and burned in the gas chambers."
'Nothing in Australia comes even close': ADC
Mr Abramovich continued, saying that making comparisons between the introduction of health measures in Victoria and Nazi Germany is "insensitive" and "debases history’s darkest period."
"Imagine the pain Holocaust survivors who lost family members would feel walking down the street would feel seeing this individual.
"They should not be revictimized by the cynical exploitation of their pain and suffering and neither should the families of the brave diggers who sacrificed their lives to vanquish the Third Reich.
"People can of course voice their disagreement with government policy, but they should not appropriate the Holocaust to advance their causes.”
According to the ADC, the woman said police failed to move the man on at first because “he had right to freedom of speech”, however they detained a woman who “physically attacked” him over the sign.
Eventually, a Police supervisor made the call to order the individual to move on, which he did.
Hundreds of people attended a protest in the CBD on Saturday to protest Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews enforcing vaccinations and new pandemic laws.
Victoria Police told Yahoo News Australia police responded to a peaceful protest outside Parliament House on Saturday however did not detail the specific incident involving the man.
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