Participants of the ceremony, which was held on Thursday at the Soviet war
memorial, honoured the memory of tens of millions of those killed in World War II.
The bronze monument was opened in the park near the Imperial War Museum exactly
20 years ago – on May 9, 1999 – in memory of the Red Army soldiers and Soviet
citizens who did not survive the war.
Diplomats from the CIS countries, veterans, and representatives of municipal
authorities and public organizations gather at the memorial to honour the memory of
those killed in the fight against fascism. Russian Ambassador to the United Kingdom
Alexander Yakovenko, Deputy Chairman of the House of Lords and Secretary of
State for Defense of the United Kingdom Frederick Curzon (Earl Howe), Member of
Parliament Neil Coyle representing London’s Southwark, as well as Mayor of
Southwark Catherine Rose delivered speeches.
“This year Victory Day is of special significance. It marks 20 years since the opening
of the Soviet War Memorial in London – a place that reminds us so powerfully of the
value of life and the high cost of our freedom paid by all those who fought against
Nazism. It also symbolises the unity of our countries, our common history, victory
and respect for the heroic deed of our ancestors,” - noted Yakovenko, who laid
flowers at the monument together with other participants of the ceremony.
The monument was created by Russian sculptor Sergei Shcherbakov; its cornerstone
was laid by then Russia’s Foreign Minister Yevgeny Primakov on May 9, 1998 The
monument represents a semi-abstract figure of a woman who holds aloft a bell, which
will forever remain silent in memory of those who died. The granite foundation of the
monument was made by British masters; its foundation holds capsules with the soil of
the countries that participated in the memorial project.
The event was organized by the Soviet War Memorial Foundation with support of the
Embassy of Russia and Rossotrudnichestvo.
Based on TASS materials