The Sinimägede or Tannenberg Line battle between Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union took place 70 years ago in NE Estonia, with Estonian Defense Forces chaplains today laying wreathes to memorials of both sides.
The battle of the Tannenberg Line took place from July 25 to August 10 in 1944 and was one of the bloodiest battles ever to be fought on Estonian soil.
In remembrance, the Estonian Defense Forces’ chaplains this morning laid wreaths at the Grenader Hill Memorial and the Memorial to Fallen Red Army soldiers in Vaivara parish of Ida-Viru County.
These wreaths serve to remember all who fell in these battles, regardless of their nationality or the side on which they fought.
While the exact number of dead and wounded remains unknown, casualties on both sides in these battles exceeded 180,000, including over 37,000 dead.
The Republic of Estonia was occupied by both Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union during the Second World War. The Estonia military was disbanded by the Soviet Union in 1940, but both occupying powers conducted forced and illegal mobilizations of Estonian citizens into their armed forces, counter to international law. Units composed of Estonians had to fight one another.