Captain Pilecki commemorated in Vilnius

On the eve of the International Day of Heroes Fighting Totalitarianism, celebrated on May 25, which is also the anniversary of the murder of Captain Witold Pilecki, who was killed by a shot in the back of the head in 1948 in the Mokotów prison in Warsaw, flowers were laid in Vilnius at the house where the Polsih hero lived.

Thursday marks 120th birth anniversary of Witold Pilecki

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“Witold Pilecki challenged two totalitarian regimes: Nazism and Communism. He was a victim of both criminal authorities. He is a symbol of patriotism, courage, love of freedom and solidarity with the persecuted, which are universal values ​​common to all people and fundamental to the Western tradition” Urszula Doroszewska, the Polish ambassador to Lithuania said during the ceremony.

The ceremony was organised with the participation of the MEP Rasa Juknevičienė. It was attended by representatives of the Lithuanian government, the local government in Vilnius and the Polish community in that country.

On Tuesday, the Polish Embassy in Vilnius is organising a lecture by Jack Fairweather, the author of the book “Volunteer. A True Story of Witold Pilecki's Secret Mission”, the first English-language biography of Pilecki translated into Lithuanian. It was awarded the prestigious Costa Book Award.

In 1948 in the Mokotów prison in Warsaw, the communist authorities carried out the death sentence on Captain Pilecki, an officer of the Home Army (AK), who in 1940 voluntarily surrendered himself to the arrest and deportation to the German Nazi death camp in Auschwitz in order to obtain information about the facilty. After escaping from Auschwitz, he fought in the Warsaw Rising, and after its fall, he was taken prisoner by the Germans.

In 1995, Pilecki was posthumously awarded the Commander’s Cross of the Order of Polonia Restituta, and in 2006 - the Order of the White Eagle, the highest Polish distinction. In September 2020 his monument was unveiled on the square in front of the Museum of the Second World War in Gdańsk, northern Poland.

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