Paying tribute to the help of the Uzbek people during the terrible years of the Second World War, when over a million refugees, among whom were hundreds of thousands of Jews, found shelter and salvation on the land of Uzbekistan, at the initiative of the Embassy of the State of Israel, a monument of Memory and Gratitude to Uzbekistan was erected in the Victory Park with the following words in Uzbek, English, Hebrew and Russian:
“In the period from 1941 to 1942, during the difficult years of the war, more than one and a half million refugees and evacuees were brought to Uzbekistan. Among them were several hundred thousand Jews. Thanks to the hospitality of the Uzbek people, who shared their bread and shelter with them, the refugees found shelter and salvation here. The Jewish people and the State of Israel are grateful, remember and appreciate it.”
Opening the monument, the work of the famous Uzbek sculptor Marina Borodina, the Israeli Ambassador Zeavit Ben Hillel said: “We are proud of the long and rich joint history of the Uzbek and Jewish peoples, the rich Bukharian-Jewish diaspora, friendship and cooperation between the State of Israel and the Republic of Uzbekistan today.
We remember how in those difficult years Uzbekistan became a place of salvation for many thousands of Jews. The people of Israel and the State of Israel remember this and will always be grateful to the people of Uzbekistan. I hope that with the help of this monument, we will shed more light on this incredible story of generosity and tolerance shown by the people of Uzbekistan.”
This memory is not about a feat, but about kindness, friendship and mutual assistance, which are so lacking today in the world.