Poland's prime minister is paying tribute to Jews murdered by Nazi Germany and to the Poles who risked their lives or died helping Jews during the brutal occupation of World War II.

Mateusz Morawiecki lit a candle and appeared to pray before a plaque outside the Ulma Family Museum of Poles Saving Jews in the southern Polish village of Markowa. He then visited the museum, which is devoted to the Polish Christian wartime helpers.

His visit Friday comes amid a bitter diplomatic spat with Israel over pending Polish legislation criminalizing some public comments about the Holocaust. Israel fears the legislation will be used to whitewash the involvement of some Poles in killing Jews during the occupation. Polish leaders say they simply aim to protect historical truth.