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Around a hundred people held the first ceremony, a vigil, in Lukiskes Square in central Vilnius on Tuesday night to honor the memory of soldiers and civilians killed in Ukraine.
Vilniuje pagerbti žuvusieji per karą Ukrainoje
Vilniuje pagerbti žuvusieji per karą Ukrainoje
© Organizatorių nuotr.

"In the face of constant threat, most Ukrainians never got the chance to say goodbye to those they loved, to those who defended them until their last breath," said Elena Patamse, one of the organizers of the event.

"We are here today to say a proper goodbye to the fallen Ukrainian heroes. To say that their struggle was not in vain, that human life still has value in our world. All the mounds of earth created and the wooden crosses installed to mark a loved one, a neighbor, a friend, a unique carpet," she said.

During the farewell ceremony, a minute of silence was observed, Ukrainian poetry was read, Ukrainian and Lithuanian songs were sung, and a commemorative fire was lit.

Participants also started creating a symbolic grave, a "Garden of Memorial Stones".

The plan is to hold such vigils for Ukrainian heroes on the 24th day of each month to mark the day the war in Ukraine started. They will also be organized in other Lithuanian cities.

Thousands of civilians have been killed and civilian buildings destroyed since Russia launched its invasion of Ukraine in late February, and there have been reports of sexual violence against Ukrainian women and children, kidnappings and other crimes.

The Humanist Ceremony was organised by Lydėtuvės and Humanist organisation in Lithuania „Laimingas zmogus“. The Ceremony was filled with music, Ukrainian poetry, texts about life and death, and stories of heroic victims. There was a commemoration fire lit for the warriors and civilians. The ceremony was finished with a symbolic ritual - the creation of a symbolic grave "commemoration garden of stones".

BNS
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