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On May 18, victims of the deportation of the Crimean Tatar people from Crimea are commemorated in Ukraine and around the world


On May 18, victims of the deportation of the Crimean Tatar people from the Crimea in 1944 are commemorated in Ukraine and around the world. On this day, the first echelon of Crimean Tatars was sent from the peninsula.

The deportation of the Crimean Tatars began on May 18, 1944 at 3 o’clock in the morning and lasted until the beginning of June (the first and largest wave ended on May 20).


On this day, the Soviet authorities began the deportation of Crimean Tatars, accusing them of mass desertion and cooperation with the enemy. Later, other Crimean peoples were accused of this. In fact, there is no evidence of “mass desertion” of Crimean Tatars.

32,000 NKVD officers were involved in the operation. Deportees were allowed to gather from a few minutes to half an hour, allowed to take personal belongings, utensils, household items and provisions at the rate of up to 500 kg per family. In reality, it was possible to collect an average of 20-30 kg of things and products, the vast majority of property remained and was confiscated by the state. Numerous cases of looting have been recorded. For 2 days, Crimean Tatars were transported by car to the railway stations of Bakhchisarai, Dzhankoi and Simferopol, from where they were sent in echelons to the east.


During the deportation, more than 183,000 Crimean Tatars were sent to Central Asia for a general “special settlement,” 5,000 for forced labor to the Moscow Coal Trust, 6,000 to the front reserve camps, and as many to the Gulag.

The deportation had catastrophic consequences for Crimean Tatars in exile. In the last year before the end of the war, more than 30,000 Crimean Tatars died of starvation, disease and exhaustion. The Crimean economy, deprived of experienced workers, suffered no less damage.

It was from this time that the mass settlement of the Crimean peninsula by the Russians began. The names of settlements changed. Historical monuments were destroyed.

Crimea was turned into a typical Soviet hinterland.

In the end, the deportation of the Crimean Tatars laid the current annexation of the peninsula by the aggressor state.

The annexation of Crimea by the Russian Federation in February 2014 highlighted the problem of the Crimean Tatars fighting for their rights. On March 20 of the same year, the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine adopted Resolution № 1140-18 “On the Statement of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine on Guaranteeing the Rights of the Crimean Tatar People within the Ukrainian State”, which recognized Crimean Tatars as indigenous people of Ukraine and guaranteed their right to self-determination.

In the first year after the annexation in 2014 alone, more than 150 Crimean Tatars were subjected to “selective justice” by the occupying authorities, 21 disappeared or were killed, and the Mejlis was deprived of both premises and the opportunity to engage in dialogue with state authorities. Of the Republic of Crimea “. It should be noted that in the seventh year of the annexation of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea, the persecution of the Crimean Tatar people by the Russian occupation administration only intensified.

Under such conditions, honoring the memory of the victims of the deportation of the Crimean Tatar people at the national level and demonstrating solidarity in the struggle for the restoration of their rights becomes important at the domestic and international levels.

The Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine by Resolution of 12.11.2015 № 792-UIII “On Recognition of the Genocide of the Crimean Tatar People” recognized the deportation of Crimean Tatars from the Crimea in 1944 as genocide of the Crimean Tatar people. The Ukrainian Parliament stated that systemic pressure on the Crimean Tatar people, repression of Ukrainian citizens on national grounds, organization of ethnically and politically motivated persecution of Crimean Tatars, their bodies, such as the Crimean Tatar People’s Majlis and the Crimean Tatar Kurultai, on the temporarily occupied territory of Ukraine Federations, starting from the date of the beginning of the temporary occupation, are a conscious policy of ethnocide of the Crimean Tatar people.

Today, on Remembrance Day, we stand in solidarity with the people of Crimea. The events of 1944 are not only a tragedy of the Crimean people. The genocide of the Crimean Tatar people is a sad page in the history of the entire Ukrainian people.

The pain of the Crimean Tatars is also the pain of the Ukrainians.

Crimea is Ukraine!


Chairman of the Board

NGO “Association of Ukrainian Defense Manufacturers”