Opening of the exhibition "Czechoslovak military units in the USSR. 1942–1945" and the awarding of the veterans of Saint-Petersburg by the medals in honor of the seventieth anniversary of Victory in the Second World War.
9 Oct 2015
On 9 October, 2015 at The Museum of Political History of Russia took place a grand opening of the exhibition "Czechoslovak military units in the USSR. 1942-1945."
The exhibition is organized by the military attaché of the Embassy of the Czech Republic in Moscow together with the Consulate General of the Czech Republic in St. Petersburg in cooperation with the State Museum of Political History of Russia. 35 stands show the participation of the 1st Battalion of the Czechoslovak Independent Field Battalion in the Soviet Union under the command of Colonel Ludvik Svoboda in the battle at Sokolovo in March 1943. As part of the event 126 veterans from St. Petersburg, participated in the liberation of Czechoslovakia, were awarded with commemorative medals for the 70th anniversary of World War II, especially provided by the Minister for Defense of the Czech Republic.
The grand opening began from the welcome speech of the director general of The Museum of Political History of Russia, Yevgeny Grigorievich Artyomov, who expressed gratitude to the veterans, guests, colleagues gathered at opening the exhibition. Yevgeny Grigorievich recalled the exhibition projects dedicated to the anniversary of the Victory, which took place at the Museum this year.
After the national anthems of the Czech Republic and Russia, the Consul General of the Czech Republic in St. Petersburg, Mr. Karel Kyunl took the floor. In his speech he said: "We are deeply grateful to the veterans of World War II, thanks to them we are all survived. If the war ended 70 years ago with the another result, today, probably, none of us, the Czechs, wouldn’t be standing here, and there wouldn’t be cause for celebration." Mr. Kyunl also expressed his gratitude to the Museum of Political History of Russia and the military commissariat of Saint-Petersburg for assistance in organizing the ceremony.
"If not for you, the Czech Republic wouldn’t exist on the world map today - the military attaché of the Embassy of the Czech Republic in Russia, Mr. Tomasz Zipfel turned to veterans - Plans of Nazism were the complete destruction of the citizens of both, the Soviet Union and the Czechs. Fighting with it was a struggle for the survival of our people. Only because the heroism of all of you, this struggle was successful. My presence this day at the St. Petersburg lands means that we are not going to rewrite history. We remember whom we owe our existence and our freedom."
Mr. Zipfel read out the order of the Ministry of Defense of the Czech Republic awarded to 126 World War II veterans from St. Petersburg, participated in the liberation of Czechoslovakia with the commemorative medals for the 70th anniversary of the Second World War, especially provided by the Minister for Defense of the Czech Republic. Awards were presented to veterans by the Consul General of the Czech Republic in St. Petersburg, Mr. Karel Kyunl, personally. More than 30 veterans were able to attend the welcoming ceremony, and others will receive medals by the Military Commissariat of St. Petersburg.
Alexander Nikolaevitch Bazhimov, deputy military commissar of St. Petersburg of veterans, recalled the main periods of the liberation of Czechoslovakia that finished the Prague offensive operation - the latest strategic operation of the Red Army in the Secord World War. Alexander Nikolaevitch called the audience to remember those who did not live up to these days, but made an invaluable contribution to the Victory.
In the end of the ceremony Yevgeny Grigorievich Artyomov sincerely thanked the veterans who defended the independence of our national homeland. He also expressed confidence that the exhibition "Czechoslovak military units in the USSR. 1942-1945" catch the great interest among the visitors of the Museum, and highly appreciate the efforts of the Consulate General of the Czech Republic in St. Petersburg and the Government of the Czech Republic, focused on preservation of historical memory of events that connected our countries. Y.G. Artyomov shows genuine appreciation of the fruitful and successful cooperation in the awarding veterans with the commemorative medals to the military commissariat of St. Petersburg.
Upon completion of the official part the veterans and guests were invited to do an exhibition. The guests of honor of the opening ceremony were representatives of the Consulate General of the Slovak Republic in St. Petersburg, the Consulate General of Ukraine in St. Petersburg, External Relations Committee of the Government of St. Petersburg and Welfare Committee of the Government of St. Petersburg.