Nova Gorica – A restored monument to the Ukrainian soldiers fighting on the WWI Isonzo Front was unveiled on Tuesday in Panovec near Nova Gorica, with the speakers noting that it was not a monument to generals and military leaders, but to ordinary soldiers who had died there.
Nova Gorica Mayor Klemen Miklavič noted that the restoration of the monument had started began long before the war in Ukraine, adding that the unveiling carried an additional message today because of the ongoing war.
“When we started this project, I could not imagine that this memory would be so pertinent today. The war in Ukraine reminds us that the belief that war is not the solution to problems has not yet matured in Europe,” he said.
“War only brings hatred and poverty,” said Miklavič, who laid wreaths on the monument together with Ukrainian Ambassador Mykhailo Brodovych.
Brodovych said that the unveiling of the restored monument was of extraordinary and symbolic importance for Ukrainians, as it was a symbol of peace and the connection between Ukraine and Slovenia.
“Unfortunately, even today there are people and countries that have not learned anything from history,” he said.
Maša Klavora, the director of the Walk of Peace in Soča Valley foundation, one of the organisers of the project, said that today’s unveiling of the monument “builds a common, better future on the foundations of tragic history.”
The monument to the 20th Imperial-Royal Landwehr Infantry Regiment, which fought around Nova Gorica, was erected in 1917 in the vicinity of its command and today represents the central monument to all Ukrainians who fought on the Isonzo Front.
In the nearby Renče, a memorial park dedicated to Slovak soldiers of the front along the Soča River was also opened today, with the ceremony featuring a re-enactment of the WWI battles in the area.