Gallery: 'Sea of Tears' in Freedom Square commemorates 1941 deportation

For the final time, the Estonian Institute of Human Rights set up an installation of light blue balloons called the "Sea of Tears" in Tallinn's Freedom Square on Friday, in memory of the victims of the more than 10,000 victims across Estonia of the 1941 June deportation.

Visitors to Freedom Square can see an overview of those directly affected by the 1941 deportation. This includes the names of more than 12,000 repressed people, including those deported and sent to prison camps, those who fled or hid themselves, and children born to families deported to Siberia. The list also includes the families of President Konstantin Päts and Gen. Johan Laidoner, commander-in-chief of the Estonian Armed Forces, who were deported in 1940.

Organizers of Friday's day of mourning are asking people to ensure that no balloons are let loose. While the balloons are made of biodegradable material, they could still potentially cause harm to the environment. The balloons will be on display in Freedom Square all day, or for as long as they hold up to current weather conditions.

This year marks the last year that the "Sea of Tears" installation will be on display on June 14. A competition for new ideas on how to commemorate the day will be announced soon.

Click here to read more about the events of June 1941.


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Editor: Aili Vahtla

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