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St. Petersburg to host series of events to commemorate lifting of Siege of Leningrad

26 January 2019
Мероприятия, посвященные снятию блокады Ленинграда, пройдут в Санкт-Петербурге

It is almost 75 years to the day since the Siege of Leningrad was lifted. On this occasion, the Roscongress Foundation would like to convey its deepest respect and gratitude to all those veterans who lived through such dark times, and congratulate the people of St. Petersburg on the anniversary of its liberation.

On 27 January 1944, the Nazis were completely expelled from the city outskirts, bringing to an end a siege which lasted 872 days and claimed hundreds of thousands of lives. It is an event which has gone down in the annals of Russia’s history as one of the most heroic and tragic moments of the Second World War. Despite the enemy’s ferocious attacks, and the losses suffered, the heroism and bravery of the people and defenders of the city remained undiminished. In recognition, Leningrad was bestowed with the title of Hero City — the highest honour possible. 27 January was also declared a national Day of Military Glory in commemoration of the lifting of the siege.

On the eve of this momentous date, the Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation has published a unique set of archives revealing details of the operation to liberate Leningrad. The materials cast light on hitherto little-known facts, such as the deployment of M-77 and M-79 submarines to Ladoga Lake, which from 1943 patrolled the waterbody and carried out military and reconnaissance operations, and the construction of a 35-km pipeline to transport fuel and petroleum products. Many of the documents relate to the so-called Road of Life — during the siege, 1,615,000 tonnes of cargo were transported and around 1,376,000 people evacuated along the route.

In turn, journalists from TASS national news agency have prepared a project ’Ask about Leningrad’. They asked people what they would like to learn about the siege and forwarded these questions to chronologists. To clarify some facts, documents and memories were studied helping to get answers from those who had witnessed these events.

A number of events are scheduled to take place in St. Petersburg to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the lifting of the siege. From 25 to 27 January, Manezhnaya Ploshchad and Italyanskaya Ulitsa will be uniquely transformed to recreate the atmosphere of Leningrad in 1941–1944, as part of a project entitled «Street of Life». A memory wall, made up of photographs and documents provided by locals, forms a key part of the exhibit. In addition, on 27 January there will be a minute’s silence in Palace Square, and a military parade along the Winter Palace, which is scheduled to begin at 10:00.

A full list of events taking place to mark the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Leningrad from the Nazi siege can be found on the official website of the St. Petersburg City Administration (Russian only).

The Roscongress Foundation and the city of St. Petersburg have long standing relations. It was here that the history of the foundation began, when the first St. Petersburg International Economic Forum took place in 1997. Today, the city hosts a wide range of major conventions and exhibitions organized by the Roscongress Foundation. These include the International Arctic Forum (9–10 April 2019), the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (6–8 June 2019), the International Financial Congress (3–5 July 2019), Russian Energy Week (1–5 October 2019), and others.