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Putin to check out 3D panorama devoted to Leningrad siege breakthrough

The building for the panorama has been built near the Breakthrough of the Siege of Leningrad diorama that was created in 1985

MOSCOW, January 18. /TASS/. Russian President Vladimir Putin is expected to attend the events in St Petersburg devoted to the 75th anniversary since the breakup of the Siege of Leningrad in 1943, the Kremlin press service said.

"The President will lay flowers at the Piskaryovsky memorial cemetery [where hundreds of thousands of people who died from famine were buried during World War II - TASS] and at the Neva Pyatachok memorial compound," the report said. "Also, he will have a tour of the Breakthrough panorama museum devoted to Operation Spark in the course of which the Siege of Leningrad was ruptured."

"As part of the program of events, Putin will meet with war veterans and activists of youth public associations, including the Schlusselburg search association.

"Participants in the meetings are expected to watch the new film ‘The Holding Line’ devoted to events on the Neva Bridgehead," the press service said.

Spokespeople for the Office of Governor of the Leningrad region said the technical opening of the new pavilion in the Breakthrough of the Siege of Leningrad museum where the new 3D panorama will be located will take place on Thursday, and on January 27 the display will be opened for the general public.

The building for the panorama has been built near the Breakthrough of the Siege of Leningrad diorama that was created in 1985 by the painters who had fought in the frontlines of World War II forty years prior to that. The authorities commissioned the project of the new museum to young historians, searchers of wartime artefacts and soldiers’ graves, architects, and masters of the Neva Battle Painters team.

The new panoramic museum has two halls. One of them is a multimedia hall that familiarizes the visitors with the video footage highlighting the five attempts of Soviet troops to rupture the Siege of Leningrad and an animation film on the tragic times of the Siege. The second hall that has a floor space of 500 sq. m unveils a breathtaking picture of the second day of Operation Spark [January 13, 1943] when the 67th Army of the Leningrad Front conducted an offensive in the Nevsky Pyatachok area.

The authors of the display have added materials gathered during search efforts on Nevsky Pyatachok - the Soviet stronghold that evidenced the fiercest combat actions during the Battle of Leningrad - and the documents taken from archives.

"What we can see here are the objects that we've found throughout the years on Nevsky Pyatachok," said Dmitry Poshtarenko, the author of the Breakthrough panorama. "When we begin digging [at the sites of former combat operations - TASS] we see how one or another combat got fixed in material finds, how one or another moment episode of the war left its imprints, how soldiers died and what they were wearing, and what the trenches consisted of."

"We register all these small details and embody them in the panorama with the aid of artistic techniques," he said. "This shows our attitude to the times of war and our love for history."

Operation Spark that was aimed at piercing the siege of Leningrad by Nazi troops began on January 12 and ended on January 18, 1943, with a victorious reunion of units of the Volkhov Front and Leningrad Front near the village of Maryino.

The siege was fully lifted on January 27, 1944. It lasted 872 days and carried away the lives of hundreds of thousands of Leningraders. Historians are still unable to name the exact number of its victims.