Remembrance day saw ceremonies in Tallinn, Tapa

Remembrance Day service in progress on Wednesday, November 11 at Tallinn's military cemetery.
Remembrance Day service in progress on Wednesday, November 11 at Tallinn's military cemetery. Source: British Embassy in Tallinn/Social Media

Wednesday saw remembrance ceremonies conducted in Estonia, marking the anniversary of the end of conflict on the Western Front in World War One.

The British Embassy in Tallinn held its traditional ceremony at the military cemetery graves of British servicemen killed during the Estonian War of Independence (1918-1920), while members of NATO's Enhanced Forward Presence (eFP) Battlegroup based at Tapa did the same, with a small, socially-distanced gathering of their own.

While the guns fell silent on the Western Front on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918, war continued in other theaters, including in Estonia, whose own War of Independence could be seen as an offshoot of the Russian Civil War sparked by the Bolshevik seizure of power in St. Petersburg in October 1917.

Success in this war led to independence and the signing of the 1920 Tartu Peace Treaty between Estonia and the fledgling Soviet Russian state.

Foreign aid provided to Estonia included the December 1918 arrival of Britain's Royal Navy's Baltic Squadron, which was able to deliver key supplies and hardware and captured two Bolshevik destroyers, handing them over to the Estonian Navy (Merevägi). A light cruiser squadron dispatched to the Baltic soon after, commanded by Commodore, later Admiral, Walter Cowan, further helped to ensure Estonian and Latvian independence. The Merevägi's flagship is named the Admiral Cowan, as a nod towards this legacy.


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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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