Angela Merkel first visited Auschwitz-Birkenau as German Chancellor. She was accompanied by Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki, as well as former prisoners and representatives of various Jewish organizations, BBC reported.
The Auschwitz International Committee called Merkel’s visit a particularly important sign of solidarity with those who survived the horrors of the Holocaust.
"Remembering the crimes... is a responsibility which never ends. It belongs inseparably to our country," Mrs Merkel said. "To be aware of this responsibility is part of our national identity, our self-understanding as an enlightened and free society... a democracy.”
Germany continued to have "deep shame" for what happened in Auschwitz-Birkenau.
"There are no words to express our sorrow," Merkel said.
This is the chancellor's first visit to the most notorious Nazi death camp, located west of the Polish city of Krakow.
The trip marks the 10th anniversary of the Auschwitz-Birkenau Foundation. Merkel announced that Germany will donate EUR 60 million as financial aid to the fund.