Ukraine: Remembering People Persecuted by the Communist Regime
The Bykivnia graves are located just outside of Kyiv. Speeches were given here to remember the victims of the communist regime who are buried here. In this park over 14 thousand people were shot to death.[Viktor Yushchenko, President of Ukraine]: [male Russian]:: These are terrifying symbols of the torture of innocent victims of totalitarian terrors. Here in Bykivnia, Stalin and his heartless accomplices destroyed the light of Ukraine and the Ukrainian nation. Tens tens of thousands of people there will be no forgiveness.Alexander Kotkos father was killed by the communists back in 1937. He was shot to death in the woods, and buried in a mass grave with 50 other people. But Alexander didnt know what happened to his father until the communists lost power.[Alexander Kotko, Father Killed by Communists]: [male, Russian]:: He was sentenced to 10 years of strict isolation, without a right to communicate. That was it. I was told by the Ukrainian DA that he was definitely buried here, in Bykivnia, with the rest of those who were shot. Hes definitely here."Thousands of human remains have been found here.[Alexander Ishuk, Security Service of Ukraine Employee]: [male Russian]:: These lists were created by the workers of NKVD and each list includes tens, sometimes hundreds of names.At least ceremonies like this one help people gain closure of the countrys violent past, and serve as a reminder to how far the country has come.NTD, Kyiv, Ukraine.