Address by

H.E. Gleb A. Ivashentsov,

Ambassador of Russia

to the Republic of Korea

at the festival dedicated to

the forthcoming Victory Day

Seoul, May 1, 2007


Dear Friends,

I welcome you all here at the festival dedicated to the forthcoming Victory Day! I am glad that it is becoming a sort of tradition for us in Seoul to celebrate this day together. Last year we had mostly Russians in this Hall but todays event is a result of a joint initiative of all six Embassies representing the countries of the Commonwealth of the Independent States in the Republic of Korea.

It is natural as the Victory Day belongs to all of us. Our grandfathers and fathers were citizens of a single great country named the Soviet Union. Our victory in the Great Patriotic war saved the world from Fascism and thus determined the further development of the mankind. There was no event in the history of Russians, Belarussians, Ukrainians, Uzbeks, Kazakhs, Azerbaijanians and other peoples of the Soviet Union that could be compared to that great victory in terms of their contribution to the destiny of the world.

Therefore the initiative to pronounce the Victory Day as the main day of glory of Russia is only logical. I am sure the idea will gain our peoples support.

Our grandfathers and fathers fought to defend their land and the right for life for themselves as well as for us. We bow to the memory of the fallen. It is our duty to cherish this memory as the people who fail to honor their history have no right for future.

Nowadays some forces are raising their head eager to rob us of our victory. The demolition of the Tallinn Liberator-Warrior Monument was by all means a sacrilegious act. By committing that the new-sprung Estonian Nazis have challenged not only Russia, but all nations of the former Soviet Union, as well as the fighters of anti-Hitler coalition, and all, who sacrificed their lives fighting Fascism.

It is but strange that neither NATO, nor the European Union are willing to recognize the fact while these organizations harbor Estonia, a country, whose neo-Nazi authorities see no chance to get international media attention other than by demolishing a monument to someone elses glory as they have no glory of their own.

Had it not been for the Soviet peoples victory over Fascism neither Europe, nor America would be able to enjoy the democracy and human rights they are so proud of.

But the provincial Estonian neo-Nazis are not the only matter of concern. From the countries whose leaders during the war had turned their capitals over to the Nazi troops without resistance and later ran errands for the Nazis sending soldiers to kill and plunder to the Soviet land, as well as from some other places, we can hear voices going almost as far as to demand a kind of a penance from us for winning the war. There is quite a practical goal behind such demands as they are aimed at denouncing the role played by the USSR in the Second World War so later each of our countries could be pushed away to the periphery of todays world politics.

This will never happen!

Today we, sons and daughters of the great power that won the war live in different countries. But the victory in the Great Patriotic War, Gagarins space-flight, or triumphs of the Soviet sportsmen are our common pride.

In the past our unity had given us power.

And we will stay powerful if we defend our interests jointly in present and future.

Let us stay together!

Happy Victory Day!