Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko together with the presidents of Germany and Austria Frank-Walter Steinmeier and Alexander Van der Bellen visited the Trostenets Memorial Complex on 29 June.
“Truth about the past war must live on while the dreadful past must not be revived.”
A requiem rally dedicated to the memory of Nazism victims took place at the site of the former death camp Trostenets today.
“Painful memory of the terrible events of World War II brought us together today.
But it’s nice that we are like one family. And it seems to me that this is the main symbol of our meeting today.
We know how the ideology of Nazism devalued human life. Death camps were the most incomprehensible phenomenon of World War Two.
Jews from Berlin, Bremen, Vienna, Dortmund, Prague, and other European cities were forced to walk the path of death here.
Ashes of Belarusian civilians, underground resistance fighters and partisans, and Soviet POWs rest here, too.
Butchers driven by the antihuman Nazi idea were hell-bent on exterminating everyone, who didn’t fit their perverse concept of the new world order.
With this memorial Belarusian architects had managed to demonstrate the fine line between life and death, which separates living breathing human beings from a pile of ashes.
Since we have a unique opportunity to know the truth about that war from the stories told by those, who experienced it firsthand, the most important thing we should do is to preserve this memory and prevent a revival of the dreadful past.
History has demonstrated in no uncertain terms that one cannot ignore evil even if it is only a nascent idea.
Its transformation into a real threat is only a matter of time.”
He thanked the presidents, politicians, and public figures, who had turned up for the rally, as well as representatives of religious organizations, leaders and residents of European citizens, all the indifferent people, whose efforts help memory about Trostenets death camp victims live on.
Trostenets was one of the largest death camps set up by the Nazi to eliminate civilians in 1941-1944.
It was the fourth largest death camp after Auschwitz, Majdanek, and Treblinka in terms of the number of victims.
Residents of Belarus, other USSR republics, deported citizens of Western European countries, including Austria, Germany, and Czechoslovakia, perished in this death camp.
The official death toll exceeds over 200,000 people from various countries.
The memorial complex consists of several locations where the Nazi invaders slaughtered people during World War Two.
The Trostenets death camp, the Shashkovka site (a pit crematorium), and the Blagovshchina site (34 mass graves).