Poland and Georgia are united by the experience of the struggle for independence. Poles and Georgians fought side by side on many fronts of the Second World War. As Karol Polejowski recalled, Georgians, as contract officers in the Polish Army, stood up to fight in defence of Polish borders in September 1939.
Many of them distinguished themselves with courage and valour, for which they received the highest Polish war decorations. After the fighting ended, some were taken prisoner by the Germans or the Soviets, and many suffered or died, recalled Karol Polejowski.
The IPN Deputy President stressed that the memory of 20th-century regimes has primarily shaped our European consciousness, which makes us all oppose any violation of a nation's right to self-determination. We also owe this attitude to General Anders and the brave, valiant Georgian soldiers he had led across three continents, he added.
Visiting Georgia to inaugurate the "Trails of Hope. The Odyssey of Freedom" project, earlier today Karol Polejowski met with General Director of the National Archives, Teona Iashvili, and Director of the Archive of the Ministry of Internal Affairs Badri Cherkezishvili. With flowers laid at the memorial to Lech Kaczyński, President Polejowski honoured the deceased Polish President, who came to Georgia fourteen years ago to protest against the Russian aggression on this country.
The Institute of National Remembrance developed the project “Trails of Hope. The Odyssey of Freedom” so that the memory of the soldiers of Anders’ Army and of their contribution to the victory over Germany were not forgotten. In this way, we want to honour the military effort of the Polish Armed Forces and the fate of civilians evacuated from the USSR with General Anders’ Army in 1942.