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The European Day of Remembrance for Victims of Stalinism and Nazism

The European Day of Remembrance for Victims of Stalinism and Nazism was proclaimed by the European Parliament on 23 September 2008. Its aim is to commemorate the victims of mass deportation and extermination, as well as to promote democracy, peace and stability in Europe.

On 23 September 2008, 409 members of the European Parliament signed a declaration on the proclamation of 23 August as European Day of Remembrance for Victims of Stalinism and Nazism. Since then, the international commemoration of victims has taken place in different European capitals. 

The date marks signing of the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact which was a neutrality pact between Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union signed in Moscow on 23 August 1939 by foreign ministers Joachim von Ribbentrop and Vyacheslav Molotov. The pact delineated the spheres of interest between the two powers, confirmed by the supplementary protocol of the German-Soviet Frontier Treaty amended after the joint invasion of Poland. The pact led to the outbreak of World War II.

The first formal commemoration of the European Day of Remembrance for Victims of Stalinism and Nazism was organised in 2011 in Warsaw, under the auspices of the Polish Presidency of the EU Council. This date marked the adoption of the 'Warsaw Declaration', whose signatories noted the necessity of preserving the memory of the evil consequences of totalitarian regimes, and called upon the European Union to explore and collect documentation connected with crimes committed by those regimes. In subsequent years, official commemorations were held in Hungary and Lithuania. This year, the commemoration events will take place in Tallinn, in the framework of the Estonian Presidency of the Council of the EU.

Source: ipn.gov.pl

22.08.2017