US schools hold moment of silence on 9/11 anniversary

A visitor to the Flight 93 National Memorial views the Wall of Names, as the nation prepares to mark the 18th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks. Picture: AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar
New York — Tens of thousands of public school students in the U.S. state of New York will observe a moment of silence on Wednesday to commemorate the 18th anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks in accordance with a new state law, local media reported on Tuesday. 

New York State governor Andrew Cuomo established the annual September 11th Remembrance Day on Monday by signing a law that mandates public schools throughout the state to allow a brief moment of silence at the beginning of the school day every year on the day. 

The law is intended to “encourage dialogue and education in the classroom” and to ensure future generations have an understanding of the terrorist attacks that killed some 3 000 people, a statement from the governor’s office has said. 

“9/11 was one of the single darkest periods in this state’s and this nation’s history, and we owe it to those we lost and to the countless heroes who ran toward danger that day and the days that followed to do everything we can to keep their memory alive,” said Cuomo in the statement. 

“By establishing this annual day of remembrance and a brief moment of silence in public schools, we will help ensure we never forget – not just the pain of that moment but of the courage, sacrifice and outpouring of love that defined our response,” he added. 

State Senator Joseph P. Addabbo, Jr and State Assemblywoman Stacey Pheffer Amato, both major sponsors of the law, said in the statement that they hope the significance of the tragic event could be acknowledged by today’s public school students who are generally under 18 and too young to have witnessed the day. The law was effective immediately. 

Xinhua

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