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Nationalists Add to Calls for Communist Terror Memorial

Source: Photo: Wikimedia Commons

The small, right-wing National Movement has proposed that the Soviet-era Maarjamäe War Memorial complex in Tallinn be converted into a memorial to victims of communist terror.

In a statement on June 14, not coincidentally the same day Estonia commemorates the victims of the Soviet-era mass deportations of 1941, the organization said it was submitting such a proposal to both the national government and municipal leaders.

The group pointed out that the now decaying complex, which sits aside the Pirita highway, was originally set up by Soviet authorities in the 1970s as a memorial to "those who fought for Estonia's freedom," a phrase which in their eyes meant the communists.

In reality, German soldiers, Estonian air force pilots and resistance fighters, all of whom fought against the communist regime, were buried at the site, its statement said.

"It's a shame that in Estonia there is still no monument to the victims of communism. There is no central place where we can remember those who suffered and died from the repressions. There is no place to bring flowers and light a candle in memory of arrested, deported, murdered or missing family members and fellow citizens," said a member of the movement's executive board, Henn Põlluaas, as quoted by Den za Dnjom.

The National Movement isn't the first to raise the memorial issue in recent months. In October, the IRL faction of the Tallinn City Council submitted a similar proposal, albeit not specifying the Maarjamäe site. Council members of the ruling Centre and Social Democratic parties supported the idea adding that the monument needs to commemorate the victims of the Nazis as well.

 

Steve Roman

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