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At the traditional festive meeting of the August 20th Club, held in the White Hall of Toompea Castle today, the participants recalled the events of 31 years ago, thanked their supporters and commemorated the members of the Club who had passed away.

President of the Riigikogu Jüri Ratas and Prime Minister Kaja Kallas delivered the welcoming addresses. Member of the August 20 Club Johannes Kass gave the keynote speech.

Ratas said that in politics, history was made every day, but there were moments in history when everything really depended on one bold decision. “As long as we hold Estonia’s freedom dear, and as long as we are caring and strive for cooperation in our decisions, we will serve the most important task of all, which is to ensure the survival of the Estonian nation and an independent and protected Estonia,” Ratas emphasised.

“We hear and see the tragic stories about the gravity of war and suffering of innocent people from the war front in Ukraine, who is fighting for its independence for itself and for all of us. Russia’s large-scale war against the state and the people of Ukraine, and the brave resistance of Ukrainians show how important it is to stand together as a nation and value your friends and allies. It is our role and our moral obligation to support Ukraine in every way we can,” Ratas said.

Ratas pointed out that celebrating common anniversaries and keeping Estonia as our common home for generations helped us build a future in which the events that threaten our sovereignty could never happen again. “Safeguarding the Republic of Estonia is in our own hands. We must act all together, and each of us individually. Just as previous generations did their best, it is now our turn to carry forward an Estonia that will last for countless years and countless generations also in the future,” Ratas underlined.

Kallas recalled the time 31 years ago, when she as a teenager eagerly followed the decisive events at Toompea with her grandparents.

“You will understand the price of freedom only when it has been taken away from you. I have lived in a society where there was no freedom, and therefore I can appreciate freedom,” Kallas said. “Our young people take freedom for granted.”

President of the August 20th Club Ants Veetõusme chaired the meeting.

The August 20 Club unites the people who were elected to the Supreme Council of the Republic of Estonia in 1990, and voted for the resolution of the restoration of the independence of Estonia 31 years ago.

Photos (will be uploaded with a delay; Erik Peinar, Chancellery of the Riigikogu)

Riigikogu Press Service
Gunnar Paal
+372 631 6351, +372 5190 2837
[email protected]
Questions: [email protected]

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