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On January 12 Minister of National Defence Rasa Juknevičienė and Chief of Defense Lt Gen Arvydas Pocius paid tribute to the victims of the January 13, 1991, events by taking part in a formal formation of the freedom defenders of 1990-1991 in the Seimas, later they attended the ceremonies of making a bonfire and laying flowers at the Television Tower, Lithuanian National Radio and Television Building, the memorial stone for the volunteer Artūras Sakalauskas.

On January 13 leadership of the Ministry of Nation Defense will attend a presentation of January 13 medals ceremony of at the Presidential Palace, a commemoration of the Freedom Fighters Day at the Seimas, and the mid-day flag-hoisting ceremony in the Independence Square. Later they and a 20-members honour guard will tribute the January 13 victims buried in the Antakalnis Cemetery. Freedom fighters buried in Alytus, Kaunas, Kėdainiai, Marijampolė and Rokiškis will be honored at the same time. Commemorative events of the Freedom Fighters Day will be closed by a holy mass in the Vilnius Cathedral.

On the night of January 13 of 1991 the Soviet army used the mailed fist to capture the Television Tower and the Radio and Television Building to topple the Government of Lithuania that had been elected according to the appropriate juridical procedures and announced the restoration of an independent state. The Soviet army did not dare to attack the Supreme Council-Reconstituent Seimas guarded by tens of thousands of Lithuania’s citizens. Nevertheless the situation at the foot of the Television Tower claimed victims – 14 people were killed and over a thousand of freedom fighters were injured by paratroopers driving military transport over the crowd and firing at armless people.

Source: kam.lt