23.08.2017. On the European Day of Remembrance for the Victims of All Totalitarian and Authoritarian regimes, delegations of Ministries of Justice of Europe and representatives of associations of victims of totalitarianism as well as representatives of institutions and organizations that study the crimes of totalitarian regimes convened in Tallinn. There were 19 countries represented on the conference or in the ministerial meeting. Invited were the EU countries and representatives from the Eastern Partnership.
Estonian Minister of Justice Mr. Urmas Reinsalu said that condemnation of all crimes against humanity and massive human rights violations committed by all totalitarian and authoritarian regimes is the basis of commemoration and we should remember the victims of all these regimes.
In the framework of the European Day of Remembrance there was a commemoration ceremony by the War of Independence Victory Column and a conference ‘The Legacy of the Crimes of Communist Regimes in 21st Century Europe’ held in Tallinn Creativ Hub. The gathering of the European Day of Remembrance was concluded with an opening of the exhibition ‘The Era of Communism’ at the Estonian Maritime Museum Gun Powder Depot.
On the European Day of Remembrance the representatives of the delegations of Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Croatia, Slovakia, Hungary and Czech Republic made a joint statement, which stated that under the Communist dictatorships in Europe, hundreds of thousands of innocent people were executed, killed, imprisoned, tortured, forced to perform slave labour or deported. No process of truth-finding and justice comparable to that staged by the international community after World War II against the perpetrators of Nazi crimes has been undertaken during the more than 25 years that have passed since the fall of the Communist regimes in Central and Eastern Europe. The memory of the victims of the Communist regimes demands the investigation and prosecution of the perpetrators of those crimes.
On 2 April 2009 the European Parliament adopted the resolution on European conscience and totalitarianism that called for the proclamation of 23 August as “a Europe-wide Day of Remembrance for the victims of all totalitarian and authoritarian regimes, to be commemorated with dignity and impartiality”. Since then the European Day of Remembrance has been held in different European capitals.
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