On Russia – Council of Europe seminar on the outcome and lessons of World War II

From the briefing by Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova, Moscow, December 24, 2020

On December 14-18, 2020, "Remembrance and Learning from Second World War" international youth seminar, dedicated to the 75th anniversary of Victory over Nazism and the 70th anniversary of the European Convention on Human Rights, was held via videoconference. This event, which has been held since 2014 as part of the Framework Programme for Cooperation in the Field of Youth Policy between the Russian Federation and the Council of Europe, was organised by the Ministry of Science and Higher Education of the Russian Federation, the National Council of Youth and Children’s Associations of Russia and the Youth Department of the Council of Europe. From year to year, such seminars evoke an interested response from participants. They highlight the importance of preserving historical memory and passing it on to new generations, help to increase the interest of European youth in the history of World War II and to realise the importance of its results for the formation of a world order based on international law.

This time, the videoconference involved youth workers, young diplomats, politicians and academics from 21 countries. The speakers included Scientific Director of the Institute of World History of the Russian Academy of Sciences Academician Alexander Chubaryan, Chairman of the Board of the Russian Historical Society Konstantin Mogilevsky, as well as representatives of the Secretariats of the Council of Europe and UNESCO.

The Russian participants particularly emphasised the inadmissibility of falsifying the past and revising the decisions of the Nuremberg Trials and stressed the decisive role of the USSR in ridding the world of the brown plague. The event showed that, despite the well-known desire of a number of EU states to distort the history of World War II, the dialogue on this topic can be honest and useful. We are pleased that in today’s Europe the tone is not always set by those who glorify Nazi accomplices and destroy monuments to the soldiers-liberators. It is important that the Strasbourg-based organisation, which was created on the post-war ruins, will maintain an understanding that the values ​​and principles on which it is based were achieved through suffering and at the cost of millions of lives, and that without the feat of Soviet soldiers we would not be celebrating the 70th anniversary of the European Convention on Human Rights this year.


Source: web-page of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russia