In Belarus there are special dates, the memories of which cause tremors and pain. These days in the list of Belarusian holidays are foremost strictly related to the history of the country and reflect the key milestones that have somehow affected its further development. There are several these dates in Belarus, but each of them is imbued with a special and tragic sacrifice.
February, 15 – the Day of the Soviet Troops Withdrawal from Afghanistan.
For Belarus, the war in Afghanistan is a national tragedy. Many units deployed on the territory of Belarus took part in the war in Afghanistan. Over 32.000 Belarusians went through the war on a foreign soil; more than a thousand of them were killed in direct clashes and later from wounds. These people also live in Vitebsk.
The symbol of those nine fire years was "notorious" FREIGHT-200, meaning zinc coffins with the fallen Soviet soldiers, most of whom were just starting their lives.
The war ended on February, 15 1989, when the last Soviet soldier crossed the bridge of the border river Amu Darya near Termez.
In memory of this event, the Museum Of Soldiers-Internationalists in Vitebsk was created, which stands and exhibition tell in details about the participation of Vitebsk soldiers in the war in Afghanistan. Also, there is a Monument to Soldiers - Internationalists "Pain" in the city, dedicated to the courage and heroism of Vitebsk residents, went on the roads of this terrible war.
April, 26 – the Day of Chernobyl Disaster.
On April, 26 1986 the largest man-made disaster in the history of mankind took place at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant. Over the time, on this day people began to remember this sad event for Belarus. Thousands of people have exhausted their health at the time of liquidation of the accident, no less died in the first months after the accident, or in the next few years. Even today many liquidators associate the state of their health with those tragic events.
This memorable date in Belarusian calendar is devoted to the memory of all those people, as well as a symbol of unreasonable management of the nature by the human being.
June, 22 июня - Day of the Nationwide Remembrance of the Victims of the Great Patriotic War.
The history of Belarus is fully impregnated with the tragic events, wars and disasters. However, the most terrible and tangible for the Belarusian people are the events that took place in Belarus during the Great Patriotic War. On this day, people in Belarus remember the victims of the bloody events when the most brutal war in the history of the XX century started.
During the war, the territory of Belarus was occupied by the Nazi Germany. At least every third Belarusian was killed in military engagements, in concentration camps, ghettos, during the guerrilla and underground movement, of hunger and deprivation. Belarusian human losses fail to recover even today.
On this day, in the country people lower national flags, hold meeting-requiem ceremonies, organize meetings with veterans of the Great Patriotic War.
Vitebsk residents also deeply respect and honour this date. It's just one of those days that cannot be forgotten and must not be forgotten. Therefore, in Vitebsk, the topic of the Great Patriotic War is one of the most common and widely represented. To trace the course of the war, step by step, it is enough to walk around the memorable places of the city. The horrors of the tragedy can be found in the topical room, which is decorated in the Local History Museum. The most complete and reliable information about the guerrilla movement in Vitebsk region is located in Shmyrev Museum. And in Winners Park there is the unique collection of military equipment, with which Soviet soldiers made their way to the Victory.