PRAGUE, September 21. /TASS/. Festivities marking the 75th anniversary of start of the Red Army’s operation to liberate Slovakia from Nazi invaders took place in the country’s northeastern village of Kalinov.
Slovak Prime Minister Peter Pellegrini, government ministers, members of parliament, political and public dignitaries, veterans, school and university students paid tribute to the Soviet soldiers.
"First and foremost, we are grateful to the Red Army for liberation from Nazis, as it lost the highest numbers of people in the fight for our freedom," Pellegrini said cited by the Slovak radio.
He warned against forgetting the feat of Soviet soldiers. In recent years, he said, some forces have been gaining strength, and they are determined to undermine the Red Army’s part in defeat of Nazi Germany.
"Regrettably, we are living through the times when it has become fashionable to reject history, to distort [historic] facts appeasing the present-day political objectives. We are horrified to hear some trumped-up narrations of history, which are designed to fit in some speculation connected to political interests [of certain politicians and groups supporting them]," the prime minister said.
Pellegrini recalled that nearly 100,000 Soviet soldiers died for freedom of the Slovaks. At least 1,200 Soviet troops were killed in just one battle for Kalinov.
Kalinov was the first Slovak inhabited locality retaken by the Red Army. Nazi invaders were ousted by the 1st Guards Army on September 21, 1944.