Dear Friend!

The Estonian Institute of Historical Memory has postponed the book launch of “Priboi” Files: Articles and Documents of the March 1949 Deportation on Wednesday, 25 March at 16.00.

We consider this step inevitable after acquainting ourselves with the recommendations of the Health Board. We wish to contribute to the protection of our people’s health.

We will inform you of the new place and time of the event after the situation has normalised.

Please note that the national commemoration ceremony at the Memorial to the Victims of Communism on Wednesday, 25 March at 13.00 has also been cancelled as well as candle lighting events in Tallinn, Tartu, Narva and Pärnu.

The facade of Patarei will be lit up in red on the occasion of the commemoration day on the initiative of the Estonian Institute of Historical Memory.

The memorial installation in Freedom Square in Tallinn will not be set up this year.

The accompanying live memorial concert in St. John’s Church, Tallinn, has been postponed!

Reliable information regarding the Coronavirus can be found on the website of the Health Board:


On the occasion of the 71st anniversary of the March Deportation, the Estonian Institute of Historical Memory organises a launch of “Priboi” Files: Articles and Documents of the March 1949 Deportation on Wednesday, 25 March at 16.00. The event will take place at Toompea 8, Tallinn. Please feel free to extend this invitation to anyone that might be interested.

The deportation that proved fatal to tens of thousands will be analysed by authors Tõnu-Andrus Tannberg (professor of Estonian History, University of Tartu), Aigi Rahi-Tamm (docent of Archiving, University of Tartu), Andres Kahar (Estonian Internal Security Service), Toomas Hiio (Research Director, Estonian Institute of Historical Memory) and Meelis Saueauk (Senior Researcher, Estonian Institute of Historical Memory). The researchers discuss different aspects of the deportation and examine the mark it left on people’s memory.

Operation „Priboi“ was a code name given Soviet mass deportations from the Baltic states in March 1949. The operation was USSR’s largest mass deportation in the post-war years and aimed to permanently eliminate any resistance to sovietisation in rural areas. The book in question is the second volume from the collection “Proceedings of the Estonian Institute of Historical Memory”. This is the first time that “Priboi” files, which were classified by the Ministry of State Security, are published in Estonian. In addition to documents, the book includes seven original articles on different aspects of the March Deportation. The articles analyse how deportations were organised in pre-war Soviet Union, the commemoration of victims of the March deportation nowadays, among other subjects.

During the event, it is possible to purchase the book at a discount price (5€).

After the book presentation, the best participants of the essay competition “The influence of the communist regime on my family and by extension – me” are announced. The competition was organised by the Estonian Institute of Memory for secondary school students.

Please register here by 21 March at the latest.

The opening of Johanna Rannula’s solo exhibition Siberian White follows at 17.30. The exhibition explores Siberia and the deportation, thereby bordering between photography and anthropology. Learn more:

The event is expected to end at 18.30.

We would like to take this opportunity to remind everyone of the national commemoration ceremony at the Memorial to the Victims of Communism in Maarjamäe on 25 March at 13.00-14.00. Furthermore, everyone is kindly invited to light a candle in commemoration of the victims of the March Deportation in Freedom Square (similar events will take place also in Pärnu’s Independence Square, in Tartu and in Narva’s Town Hall Square). At 19.00, a free memorial concert will take place in St. John’s Church, Tallinn.

Further information:
Sergei Metlev
Estonian Institute of Historical Memory / Public and Partner Relations officer
+372 5335 9639