Observances are being held at Auschwitz-Birkenau in memory of the Roma and Sinti victims of the camp, who, like the Jews, were condemned to destruction under Nazi Germany's murderous ideology.

Dozens of people, among them Roma representatives, gathered there on Tuesday for a remembrance ceremony.

Every year such observances are held on Aug. 2 because on that day in 1944 the last group of nearly 2,900 Roma and the closely related Sinti at the death camp — mostly elderly people, women and children — were killed in the gas chambers.

In total some 23,000 Roma and Sinti died in the so-called "Zigeunerlager" (Gypsy camp) at Auschwitz-Birkenau or in the gas chambers. In total, hundreds of thousands of Roma and Sinti were killed in the Holocaust.