During the Great Patriotic War there was a hospital in the area of Mezhdurechye, as well as the radio center of the NKVD and the intelligence department of the headquarters of the Northern Fleet. Groups of Norwegian partisans and Soviet intelligence officers were also trained there.
The event started with a welcoming speech by the head of the non-profit fund “Shield” Gennady Gurylev. Then the word was passed to the youngest participants of the event – students of the Mezhdurechenskaya School, who read poems dedicated to the Victory Day.
The patriotic march along the monuments and graves of fallen soldiers located in the Murmansk region and Northern Norway takes place twice a year, in spring and autumn. Usually the Norwegian delegation takes part in the events. For several years, due to the difficult epidemiological and political situation, the events have been held separately – each side honors the memory of the soldiers who died fighting fascism at home. There is a stele dedicated to the Norwegian partisans in Mezhdurechye. Just like last autumn, the Norwegian delegation could not attend the events in Russia in person, but they sent a basket of flowers.
“Ordinary Norwegians have always honored the memory of the fallen heroes, have always stood for friendship with Russia, for peace with Russia, for mutual support with Russia, and it will always be so,” Gennady Gurylev said.
Deputy of the Murmansk Regional Duma Lyubov Cherepanova in her speech noted the great importance of preserving the memory of the heroic deeds of our grandfathers.
“The ninth of May is a holiday filled with happiness and sorrow at the same time. There is not a single family in the vastness of our country that has no members affected by this war. Today we remember all those who sacrificed their lives for us to have this wonderful blue bright sky above our heads,” she said.
Sergey Goncharov, a member of the MRB RGS Council, in his speech noted that over the past six years the Murmansk Regional Branch of the Russian Geographical Society has been involved in organizing events dedicated to preserving the memory of the Soviet soldiers and Norwegian partisans. In the course of this collaboration, the "March of memory" project was born. It includes 16 sites on the territories of Russia and Norway. The starting point of the memory march is the village of Mezhdurechye.
“For the Russian Geographical Society in the Arctic, preserving the war memory is a priority. I would like to add that not just the ordinary Norwegians, but also the Provincial Assembly of Finnmark, as well as the leadership of the Museum Association asked to convey words of gratitude for the fact that we are here today, laying flowers to honor the memory of those who died during the war. They wish to continue the cooperation in the name of preserving the common memory of the struggle against fascism. A similar ceremony will also be held in Kiberg and Kirkenes and flowers will be laid,” he said.
Sergey Goncharov talked about the plans of the Murmansk Regional Branch of the Russian Geographical Society for the new expedition season. Expeditions to the Pechengsky district, the Sredny and Rybachy peninsulas, as well as the sea stage of the Remember the War expedition are planned.
“To love your country, to love your region means to know it, so I urge everyone to improve their knowledge, to tell their children about their native land,” said Sergey Goncharov.
After the event, the participants laid flowers at the monuments and burial sites of Soviet and Norwegian soldiers in the village of Mezhdurechye.