Bikers remember Polish victims of Soviet killings
PR dla Zagranicy
Dozens of motorcyclists on Saturday set off from Warsaw on an annual ride to western Russia to remember the murder of some 22,000 Poles by the Soviet secret police in 1940.
Motorcyclists set off on International Katyn Rally. Photo: PAP/Radek Pietruszka
After singing the Polish national anthem, the bikers set off from the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in central Warsaw on a three-week trip that will take them on a route of almost 6,000 km through Ukraine, Russia, Belarus and Lithuania.
The ride is being held for the 16th time.
"The ride is a lesson in patriotism... we want to educate a new generation," said Father Dariusz Stańczyk, chaplain of the International Katyn Rally.
The bikers will travel to sites linked to the mass murder of some 22,000 Poles - chiefly army officers - who were taken prisoner by the Soviet Union after it invaded eastern Poland in September 1939 shortly after the outbreak of World War II.
The killings by the NKVD secret police - who regarded the captured Poles as enemies of communism and of the Soviet Union - took place at various points across the then USSR, among them the Katyn Forest in the west of the country.