It is 62 years today, 18 May, since the Crimean Tatars were forcibly deported from the Crimea to Siberia and Central Asia


On this day in 1944 almost 190 thousand Crimean Tatars were forced from their homes in the Crimea.  Russians were moved in to occupy the area. Almost half died in the course of the deportation.

One of the leaders of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people, Refat Chubarov, who was himself born in exile, says that 18 May is a day of mourning and of unity.

“This is a day of mourning, but also a day of uniting our efforts, within the framework of an independent Ukraine to restore all our rights. It is a day of grief, or sorrow, but also a day when we feel the unity of the Crimean Tatar community”.

Refat Chubarov adds that the Crimean Tatars are hoping that the Ukrainian authorities will resolve the political and legal problems of the formerly deported people.

Today, in all the peninsula’s mosques, services will be held to remember those who died. A remembrance procession will begin from 5 points in the city. At the central square in Simferopol an All-Crimean rally .will be held.

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