The Tree of Peace planted at the Memorial Complex “Šumarice” near Kragujevac
The Tree of Peace, planted near the Memorial to the shot Slovak soldiers at the Šumarice Memorial Complex near Kragujevac, is another symbol of the remembrance of the sacrifice of the Slovak soldiers in World War I and of friendship between Serbia and Slovakia.
On behalf of the Ministry of Defense, the ceremony of planting the Tree of Peace, which began with the intonation of the national anthems of the two countries and the laying of wreaths, was attended by Secretary of State, Aleksandar Živković. Apart from the Slovak delegation, wreaths were laid on the monument to the shot Slovak soldiers by Minister without portfolio in the Government of the Republic of Serbia, Slavica Đukić Dejanović and President of the City of Kragujevac, Miroslav Petrašinović.
After the ceremonial planting of the Tree of Peace, the Ambassador of the Slovak Republic to Belgrade, Dagmar Repčeková pointed out that the project “The Tree of Peace” was initiated on the occasion of the centenary of the end of World War I, at the initiative of the Slovak landscape architect Marek Sobol, and in memory of the unfortunate event of 8 June 1918. 44 soldiers of the reserve unit of the 71st Thracian Infantry Regiment were shot in Stanovljansko Polje for standing up to their superiors on 3 June, which was one of the loudest protests by soldiers during World War I directly at the frontline.
- The Tree of Peace is a living monument that is planted in honor of both known and unknown victims of the Great War and of the war conflicts in general, and symbolizes life and peace at the same time. Today’s generations need to be reminded of the suffering of the war and the dangers that have their parallels in the world today – said the Slovak Ambassador, adding that the project has international character, with the aim of planting the Tree of Peace on all continents over the next four years.
In addition to the Tree of Peace, a metal memorial plaque was erected on a stone plinth made of stone from Slovakia.