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Lithuania commemorates January 13, Freedom Defenders Day, for the 30th time

“National resolve and self-sacrificing fight for freedom even when it looks hopeless is inscribed in our genetic heritage. Insurrections against the tsarist Russia in the 19th century, the marvel of the Freedom Fight in which ordinary volunteers withstood and won, the partisan fight of those left „all alone“. It was the same resolve that came back and guided us in January of 1991. We shed our blood but defended our inherent right of liberty, we withstood the tanks and machine guns, and the avalanche of brutal smearing,” says Minister of National Defence Arvydas Anušauskas commemorating Freedom Fighters Day – January 13.

The Honour Guard Company of the Lithuanian Armed Forces laid flowers and lit candles at the January 13 Memorial of the Seimas, at the National Radio and Television Building, Vilnius TV Tower, and will honour the freedom fighters buried at Antakalnis cemetery. Flags of Lithuania have been hoisted in the Independence Square. Candles of unity and hope were lit in the windows of the Ministry of National Defence for the Freedom Fighters who perished in 1991.

National Defence Volunteer Force soldiers laid flower tributes for the Freedom Fighters buried in Alytus, Kaunas, Kėdainiai, Marijampolė, Rokiškis.

Freedom Fighters killed during the night of 13 January 1991 by the Vilnius TV Tower and the National Radio and Television Committee Building: Loreta Asanavičiūtė, Virginijus Druskis, Darius Gerbutavičius, Rolandas Jankauskas, Rimantas Juknevičius, Alvydas Kanapinskas Algimantas Petras Kavoliukas, Vidas Maciulevičius, Titas Masiulis, Alvydas Matulka, Apolinaras Juozas Povilaitis, Ignas Šimulionis, Vytautas Vaitkus, and Vytautas Koncevičius who died of injuries later (in February).

More information about the commemoration can be found at the official website of the Parliament.

Photo credits: Alfredas Pliadis

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