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Lithuanian President: We have to testify the truth about Soviet deportations

Lietuvos prezidentė Dalia Grybauskaitė
BFL/Vyginto Skaraičio nuotr. / Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaitė
Šaltinis: BNS
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Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaitė honored the memory of victims of massive deportations by the Soviet Union and stressed the need to preserve the truth and not to allow to trivialize or distort it.

According to the Lithuanian president, June 14 brings up the memory of a painful past which will never be erased as it is in the memory of people and the state.

"History leaves facts, testimonies, and opportunities for interpretation. But today, as we are standing here remembering the victims of occupation, genocide and Soviet-time repressions, we must testify the truth, even if somebody deems it uncomfortable and unnecessary," the president said at a commemorative ceremony on Friday.

Only the truth and honesty may help avoid the manipulation of history, to fight threats to information security and strengthen trust in each other and the state, the president said.

Over 280,000 people were deported from Lithuania during the deportation period.

"These were real people, taken out of their families and homes, stuffed into wagons and doomed to die. But these people held to their lives, stayed together, shared every bite and wished to return to Lithuania and help it revive," Grybauskaitė said.

The president also attended a solemn parliamentary sitting and a flag-hoisting ceremony for the occasion.

Commemorative events to mark the Days of Hope and Mourning and Occupation and Genocide are taking place in Lithuania on Friday and Saturday.

On June 15, 1940, the Soviet Union occupied Lithuania in breach of international treaties and started massive deportations of Lithuanian people on the night of Juny 14, 1941.

BNS
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