Open letter

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For participants and guests of the opening ceremony for the monument to the end of the civil war erected in Sevastopol

Dear compatriots!

Today, I appeal not only to the participants of the solemn ceremony of opening of the monument dedicated to the end of the Civil War, but to all the compatriots, living in many countries around the world.

The idea of creating a Monument to Reconciliation was born here, in Sevastopol. This port became the last piece of Russian land for those who left their homeland. This is where the long-suffering history of the Russian White emigration began.

This idea originated idea 10 years ago with us, the representatives of the descendants of the first wave of the Russian emigration, the leaders of the International Council of Russian Compatriots: Count Pyotr Petrovich Sheremetev, myself, as well as the then Executive Secretary of the organization Eugene S. Tabachnikov.

The initiative of creating the monument was approved by His Holiness Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia Kirill as “appropriate and timely”. It received unanimous support at the World Congress of Russian Compatriots living abroad and in June last year, at the 5th International Humanitarian Forum in Livadia, becoming a strong incentive for the unity of the Russian world.

The tragic events of 1917–1920’s shocked and altered the historical development of our Russia and many other countries. These were grievous years of great human losses. But having endured them, Russia now comprehends that without tolerance and the desire to gain faith, there can be no movement forward. Our current desire is the revival of Russia in all its former integrity and greatness.

In August 2014 Russian President V.V. Putin noted that the Crimea will play a unifying role for Russia because it “became a historical spiritual source of another line of reconciliation for the reds and whites.” Over the past years, the idea of unity has not lost its relevance and to the citizens of Sevastopol and for the Crimean people, whose homeland was returned from Ukraine to Russia.

The monument erected in Sevastopol represents mother Russia stretching out her hands over the two figures of the White Guard officer and the Red Army soldier. Its content and execution symbolize the historic reconciliation of the parties warring each other in the Civil War.

I firmly believe that this monument, according to its design, should become a symbol of the civil unity of modern Russian society and the unity of the Russian world. Its purpose is to move everyone to reconciliation and harmony for the sake of the prosperity of Russia.

On behalf of the International Council of Russian Compatriots I wish to express gratitude to all the staff of the Russian Military History Society and, of course, the sculptor Andrey Nikolaevich Kovalchuk for the creation of this magnificent monument symbolizing the civil consensus and partnership of all Russians, regardless of their political views and country of residence, in name of the good of Russia.

To conclude, I wish to thank the President of Russia V.V. Putin for his support of such important initiatives by Russian compatriots as the construction of such a powerful monument, as well as his support for the idea of creating a National Portrait Gallery, historically significant for Russia, which accepted with gratitude 11 years ago and which still is awaiting its implementation.

Prince Nikita Dmitrievich Lobanov-Rostovsky,

Honorary member of the Praesidium of the International Council of Russian Compatriots (ICRC).

April 22, 2021, Sevastopol

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