About a thousand people gathered today in Donetsk to pay tribute to children from the Donetsk People’s Republic who died as a result of the conflict. The action “They will never hear the school bell ringing” was held in the central square of the city.
The event was attended by the Human Rights Ombudsman in the DPR Daria Morozova, Deputy Commander of the DPR Operational Command Eduard Basurin, First Deputy Head of the Central Executive Committee of the Public movement “Donetsk Republic” Andrei Kramar, representatives of the DPR Ministry of Information, as well as parents of the victims.
“It’s hard to find the right words when we talk about children. I want to ask you one thing: remember those children, remember that there are their parents, brothers, sisters, grandmothers. We must support them – lives are lost forever, but we must move on,” Basurin said. “I apologize, as we are guilty of what had happened to some extent. We couldn’t save their lives.”
Several hundred people laid flowers on a banner specially installed on the square with photographs of the children who were killed. They lit candles, many brought toys and angel figures made of paper.
“When he was born, I always thought about what he would be, what education he would get, what kind of family he would have, about his future children. And now I have nothing to dream about, no one to think about. I just stand and watch how his friends are getting older, his classmates grow up,” one of the mothers said, whose son died as a result of shelling by the Ukrainian forces.
As a result of the conflict about 80 children were killed in the DPR alone.
“Statistics are not just numbers when it comes to children’s lives,” said Morozova. “Today we are here to honour the memory of children who will never go to school. As the Human Rights Ombudsman, I would like to appeal to the whole world community so that we will be heard, so that they will understand our pain.”