APRMAYJUN
31
201220132014
4 captures
31 May 2013 - 03 Jun 2013
About this capture
Sign in
About Us
Last Update 19:3
Friday, 31 May 2013
Home
Egypt
World
Business
Opinion
Arts & Culture
Folk
Sports
Life & Style
Heritage
Books
Multimedia
Georgia commemorates 'Soviet Occupation Day'
Georgia commemorates Red Army invasion of 1921 amid tensions with Russia
AFP , Friday 25 Feb 2011
Print
Send
Tweet
Views: 342
Georgia on Friday marked its first "Soviet Occupation Day", a commemoration of the Red Army invasion in 1921 held amid present-day tensions with Russia.
"It’s the most tragic day in our recent history," said Prime Minister Nika Gilauri at a memorial ceremony in the capital, which fell to Soviet forces 90 years ago.
The invasion ended a three-year period of liberty from Moscow's rule and replaced a fledgling democratic government with a Communist regime that ran Georgia until it gained independence again in 1991.
Georgian politicians are comparing the Red Army invasion to the brief war with Russia in 2008, which saw Moscow's troops pour into the country to repel Tbilisi's attempt to take back the rebel region of South Ossetia.
"Russia has always had imperial ambitions and unfortunately Georgia got into the sphere of these ambitions -- in 1921 when it was annexed by the Red Army and again in 2008 when Russia invaded Georgia," senior governing party lawmaker Petre Tsiskarishvili told AFP.
Georgia says history has repeated itself, accusing Russia of occupying parts of its territory again after Moscow permanently stationed troops in South Ossetia and another rebel region, Abkhazia, controversially recognising both as independent states.
Events to mark the inaugural Soviet Occupation Day included the inauguration of a permanent memorial building to the short-lived "First Republic" and a competition in schools for the best essay about similarities between the two wars.
"What we witnessed in 2008 makes us feel very acutely what our ancestors experienced in 1921," the 16-year-old winner of the essay competition Tornike Beridze told AFP.
"Just like 90 years ago, in 2008 the Russian leadership attempted to annihilate Georgian democracy and the Georgian state," he said.
Beridze was announced as the winner at a ceremony at the Museum of the Soviet Occupation in Tbilisi, which documents the Red Army invasion, the bloody purges ordered by Georgian-born Soviet leader Joseph Stalin and the struggle for independence.
Some 80,000 Georgians were killed by the Soviet authorities, and a further 400,000 judged to be enemies of the state were deported, one exhibit states.
The museum drew criticism from Moscow when it opened in 2006, with some Russian politicians describing it as nationalist propaganda.
Nicole Jordania, the granddaughter of Noe Zhordania, leader of the government that fled to France after being ousted by the Soviets, said the invasion was a tragedy because it ended a brave attempt to establish democracy.
"After the invasion, people tried to rebel several times, there was a whole insurrection run by my grandfather from Paris, but people were just slaughtered," she told AFP in advance of Friday's commemorations.
"I'm very proud and I want the world to know what they did and how they sacrificed their lives for their country," she said.
Jordania said she believed that Russia still represents a danger to Georgia's independence after the most recent war between the two neighbours.
"The geopolitical situation of Georgia in 1921 is similar to the situation today, unfortunately -- so yes, there is still a threat."


Search Keywords:
Georgia   |   occupation   |   Soviet   |   commemoration   |   Red Army  


Short link:

 
Email
 
Name
 
Comment's Title
 
Comment
Ahram Online welcomes readers' comments on all issues covered by the site, along with any criticisms and/or corrections. Readers are asked to limit their feedback to a maximum of 4000 characters (roughly 750 words). All comments/criticisms will, however, be subject to the following code
  • We will not publish comments which contain rude or abusive language, libelous statements, slander and personal attacks against any person/s.
  • We will not publish comments which contain racist remarks or any kind of racial or religious incitement against any group of people, in Egypt or outside it.
  • We welcome criticism of our reports and articles but we will not publish personal attacks, slander or fabrications directed against our reporters and contributing writers.
  • We reserve the right to correct, when at all possible, obvious errors in spelling and grammar. However, due to time and staffing constraints such corrections will not be made across the board or on a regular basis.

Readers Picks
Most Viewed
Most Commented
© 2010 Ahram Online. Advertising