President Duda: Polish history cannot be understood without the Katyń massacre

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April 13 is the Day of Remembrance for Victims of Katyń Massacre, as exactly 30 years ago, the Soviet Union admitted and confirmed that thousands of Polish prisoners of war were brutally executed and buried in mass graves by the NKVD in the spring of 1940.

“We Poles will always remember Katyń. We remember it today, on the 80th anniversary of the crime differently than we planned to, with many choosing to remember the event on the web. Even in such a unique time, Katyń remains a symbol, without which, Polish history cannot be understood,” President Duda wrote in a message on the website dedicated to the 80th anniversary of the Katyń Massacre.

Duda stressed that the name of Katyń reminds Polish citizens of the 20,000 Poles who were murdered by the NKVD, an event that Soviet authorities blamed on Nazi Germany for decades until admitting in 1989 the massacre was carried out by Soviet forces.

Many of these 20,000 Poles were a part of the country’s elite. The Russians executed prisoners of war, political prisoners, Polish reserve officers, border guards, policemen, clergy, intellectuals, and government officials.