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Monument to Afghan war soldiers in Minsk turns 20

Pain of loss embodied in bronze and stone. Exactly 20 years ago, a chapel in memory of Afghan war soldiers who did not return home appeared on the Island of Tears.

On the altar inside the chapel carved the names of the fallen soldiers, who were called soldiers-internationalists in the Soviet Union.

Nina Dus, mother of a dead soldier-internationalist:
I'm still waiting for him. Because I did not see him dead.

They brought a zinc coffin. We wanted to open it, but they dissuaded us.

Years dull the pain but do not cure wounds. Nina often comes to the Island of Tears. Today, she is not alone. Next to her are mothers, widows and comrades. This the place appeared in Minsk 20 years ago.

Tatiana Revizore, CTV:
Over the 10 years of the war in Afghanistan 771 Belarusians did not return from the land sprinkled with blood.  Relatives of the fallen can at any time put a candle and remember friends.

The memorial complex was created during five years. The chapel was erected based on the design of the old temple of Euphrosyne of Polotsk. The basis of the monument are the figures of grieving mothers. Those that are holding candles are still hoping to see their sons. Those frozen behind already know that the wait is futile.

Over time, the chapel became a monument to all Belarusians who died on the battlefield anywhere in the world.

Mikhail Mokan, chairman of the Union of Afghan War Veterans of the Republic of Moldova:
Belarus has always been an example for us - how to treat soldiers' feats. This is evidenced by the monument itself - one of the most beautiful in the former Soviet Union

Yevgeny Podsolenov, Chairperson of the International organization Combat Brotherhood Without Borders (Ukraine):
Here somewhere a birch grows. This birch was planted for the Belarusian people not to participate in any war. And thank God that of all the Slavic states Belarus is the only that is not involved in any conflicts. I would like it to be the case forever.

Please watch the video to see more about the monument

MORE: Minsk monuments connected with wars

Monument to Afghan war soldiers in Minsk turns 20