Ukrainians light candles on Freedom Square to remember Holodomor victims

The Congress of Ukrainians in Estonia held a ceremony in memory of the victims of the Holodomor, a famine which killed millions of people in Ukraine in the 1930s, in Tallinn on Saturday.

Every year on the fourth Saturday of November, Ukrainians commemorate the millions of victims of the Holodomor, a famine caused by forced collectivization by the Soviet government and confiscation of grain from peasants in 1932-1933.

At 4 p.m., a minute of silence, a prayer service, and memorial candles were lit at Freedom Square. The ceremony was attended by the Ukrainian Ambassador to Estonia Mariana Betsa and Chairman of the Congress of Ukrainians in Estonia Vira Konyk. Approximately 50 people attended.

At least 3 million people are believed to have died in the famine that swept the eastern, central, and southern regions of Ukraine. But some estimates put the number of victims at two or three times higher.

Fifteen countries, including Estonia, have recognized the Holodomor as genocide. Russia rejects the notion that Soviet authorities systematically targeted Ukrainians.

Last year, former foreign minister Sven Mikser (SDE) attended an event marking the 85th anniversary of the Holodomor in Ukraine. He made a speech and said: "Looking back at the history of totalitarianism, the Holodomor stands out as one of the 20th century's greatest tragedies. The world must not forget it. Twenty-five years ago, Estonia was the first country to adopt a parliamentary declaration condemning the famine-genocide of 1932-1933 in Ukraine caused by the Stalinist policy of forced collectivisation and its aggressive dehumanisation. Estonians remember the brutality of 20th century Soviet totalitarianism and its assault on human dignity."


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Editor: Helen Wright

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