The ceremony took place at the Memorial of Eternal Glory, where soldiers who defended Ukraine during World War II are buried, Ukrinform reports citing the President’s Office.
"Today, June 22, is the Day of Mourning and Commemoration of War Victims in Ukraine. [We mark] the 80th anniversary of the beginning of the bloodiest period of World War II. This tragedy affected almost every Ukrainian family. Millions of Ukrainians went to war to protect the world from the Nazi invasion. Today, we remember their feat and thank each of them for the life and the opportunity to build a new Ukraine in which there will be no place for wars," Zelensky said.
The ceremony was also attended by Head of the President’s Office Andriy Yermak.
Those present observed a minute of silence in memory of the victims.
The Day of Mourning and Commemoration of War Victims in Ukraine is marked on June 22.
On June 22, 1941, despite a secret non-aggression pact (the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact of 1939) and close military-economic cooperation between Germany and the USSR, Nazi Germany attacked Soviet troops along the entire border from the Baltic Sea to the Black Sea. The German-Soviet war of 1941-1945 began as an integral and major part of World War II.
The German-Soviet war lasted from June 22, 1941, to May 8, 1945. Its battles became one of the largest in the military history of the 20th century.
Among all the world’s countries, Ukraine suffered the greatest losses during the war. According to various estimates, between 8 and 10 million people were killed in Ukraine, including about 5 million civilians; 2.2 million were deported to Nazi Germany for forced labor, and 10 million people lost their homes. More than 700 towns and urban-type settlements, almost 30,000 villages were ruined completely.
This day commemorates all people whose lives were crippled and destroyed by World War II.
Photo credit: President’s Office
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