Removal of Soviet-era monuments in Tallinn sparks anger in Russia
Wednesday, January 24 2007 @ 09:45 PM MSK
A recent vote by the Estonian Parliament to remove a Soviet-era monument to the Red Army soldiers killed in World War II from its current location in the Estonian capital of Tallinn, sparked anger in Moscow with Russian youth organizations gathering in Manejnaya Square close to Kremlin Palace to protest the law.
Nearly 2,000 Russians convened on Manejnaya Square, close to Kremlin Palace in Moscow, to protest a recent decree by the Estonian Parliament to allow the removal of the Bronze Soldier, a monument in the Estonian capital Tallinn, commemorating the Red Army soldiers who died in World War II. The decree would also allow for the removal of various other remnants of the country's Soviet past.
Protestors included the Russian youth organizations the Russian Guards, Ours, Locals and Young Russia as well as representatives of the Russia Unity Party.
Members of the Ours dressed in the uniforms of the Soviet Red Army stated their intention to go to Estonia to guard other Soviet era monuments should the Bronze Solider statue be removed.
Protestors carried banners reading, "We are live monuments of the war," "Hitler, Hero of Estonia" and "We will protect the soldier monument," and called on the Estonian Parliament to abolish the new decree.
Constantin Ratullin, a Russian deputy from the Russian State Duma, called on the Russian government to punish Estonia for insulting the Red Army.
"They have unfortunately misunderstood our warm approach following the collapse of the Soviet Union. We must show them their place," said Ratullin.