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Daugavpils | City news

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Daugavpils commemorated the January uprising in Inflanty

On January 22 a commemoration of the January uprising took place in the Tourism and information centre of the Daugavpils fortress. This is an important event not only to the Polish nation but to the whole Europe as well. This event is closely related to the Daugavpils fortress.

Polish Ambassador to Latvia Jerzy Marek Nowakowski, the Chairperson of Daugavpils city council Žanna Kulakova, Foreign Affairs Adviser at Chancery of the President of Latvia Marģers Krams, Parliamentary secretary at Latvian Ministry of Defense Veiko Spolītis participated at the commemoration.

This year the 150th anniversary of the January uprising has been celebrated. This was one of several polish national uprisings of the XIX century, which aimed at regaining the independence of Poland that was lost at the end of XVIII century, when Poland was divided among its neighbouring countries.

The manifesto issued by the Polish National Government on January 22, 1863 announced the beginning of the uprising. The manifesto declared that all citizens of the former Rzeczpospolita are free and equal; peasants were gained property rights to land. The January uprising caused great interest in the Europe.

One of the most tragic figures of that time was Leon Broel – Plater, who by trying to protect the actual commander of the offensive took the blame upon himself and was put to death in the Daugavpils fortress.

Latvian poet Jānis Rainis depicts the death of the young Leon in the poem ‘Sunday and the count Plater’ (collection of poems ‘Saules gadi’).

The commemorative ceremony in the Daugavpils fortress began with declamation of the poem by pupils.

Polish Ambassador to Latvia Jerzy Marek Nowakowski in his speech emphasized that the January uprising is the border between the old and the new Poland, it was the uprising against democracy. Daugavpils had an important role in these events. The uprising united many nations, it was a common struggle.

Žanna Kulakova - the Chairperson of Daugavpils city council acknowledged that the uprising had very tragic consequences for the polish nation and Daugavpils recollects the tragic events together with the polish nation, commemorates the killed, the deportees and those with broken fates.

 ‘Daugavpils answered the call of the president of Poland Bronislaw Komorowski. We bow down our heads in respect for the brave fighters and light candles in commemoration of the January uprising and its victims, the death  of whom did not go in vain, it demonstrated the polish nation’s tremendous endeavours to regain the freedom,’ told Žanna Kulakova - the Chairperson of Daugavpils city council.

After speeches the priest A.Šavels held the prayer and the candles were lighted. After the commemoration the former principles of the Polish school – G.Gavare and the Polish kindergarten – E.Rinkeviča were honoured at the Daugavpils State Polish Gymnasium.

Information has been prepared by press secretary of Daugavpils city council Līga Korsaka