War of Independence fallen to be remembered in Estonia with minute of silence Wednesday

  • 2024-01-03
  • BNS/TBT Staff

TALLINN - A minute of silence will be observed across Estonia at 10:30 a.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 3, to commemorate the people who fought and lost their lives in the Estonian War of Independence and to mark 104 years since the armistice between Estonia and Soviet Russia that ended the war.

At 10:30 a.m. on Jan. 3, 1920 a ceasefire agreed between the Republic of Estonia and Bolshevist Russia on Dec. 31, 1919, came into effect, putting an end to 402 days of fighting. Estonia lost more than 6,000 people, including some 4,000 in combat, in the 1918-1920 War of Independence.

A moment of silence is observed every year on Jan. 3 at 10:30 a.m. to commemorate the Estonians and foreigners who fought in the war and gave their lives for Estonia's freedom. Jan. 3 is a flag day in Estonia, meaning that flags are hoisted by all institutions and public-law legal entities of the state and municipal governments across the country. Also everyone else can display the national flag to mark the occasion.

Minister of Defense Hanno Pevkur will give a speech at the monument to the victory in the War of Independence in Tallinn at 10:33 a.m. on Wednesday, to be followed by speeches by student of the Tallinn Secondary School of Science Karl Marten Kristenprun and a representative of the League of Estonian Corporations, and a memorial prayer by Archbishop Urmas Viilma, head of the Estonian Evangelical Lutheran Church. Subsequently, wreaths will be laid at the foot of the monument by Pevkur, commander of the Estonian defense forces, Gen. Martin Herem, and commander of the Kaitseliit (Defense League) territorial defense corps, Maj. Gen. Ilmar Tamm.