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The President of the Republic participated in the ceremony commemorating the June deportation

President Rüütel today spoke at the memorial service held at the statue of Linda at Toompea to commemorate the victims of 1941 deportation.

In his speech, the President of the Republic said that on today’s Day of Mourning it is important to understand the pain of each single person and quoted what Helvi Koppel, a girl from Saaremaa, had written in her memoirs about her experience of being deported from her home: “Though it was midsummer, my mother had ordered us to put on our winter coats, but nevertheless I was feeling cold all over my body and even deeper inside… I did not know then and could not understand that there are things that can be done only in the darkness of night.”

President Rüütel emphasised that today we have to understand that our soldiers who were fighting in the armies of two opposite sides in the war were also victims of the regime that destroyed Estonia’s independence. “Fortunately, part of them had the chance to return from the war, but after that they had to confront a new injustice as at home they were divided into being ours and not ours. It is time to overcome that. Let us not allow the seed sown by a foreign power to grow into hatred in our hearts,” the Head of State said.

“Let us remember and mourn, knowing that we should not let the past overshadow the future,” the President of the Republic said.

The memorial service was also attended by Chairman of the Riigikogu Toomas Varek, Prime Minister Andrus Ansip, members of the Riigikogu and the Diplomatic Corps. Also Leo Õispuu, Chairman of the Tallinn MEMENTO Association of the Estonian Union of Illegally Repressed Persons, and Konstantin Provalov, Ambassador of the Russian Federation to Estonia spoke at the service.

Public Relations Department of the Office of the President
Kadriorg, June 14, 2006

© 2006 Office of the President l tel: + 372 631 6202 l fax: + 372 631 6250 l