An opening ceremony in front of the Russian Embassy of the square named after Russian oppositionist Boris Nemtsov took place in Vilnius on Friday, August 24.
“This square is named after Boris Nemtsov not just because he was Lithuania’s great friend, but [also for the] values for which he fought: peace, democracy, human rights, freedom. We all want to live in a world, where these universal values prevail,” said Vilnius Mayor Remigijus Simasius during the ceremony.
He hopes that one day “the Russian ambassador will be also proud that he lives near the public square named after Boris Nemtsov.”
In turn, Lithuanian Foreign Minister Linas Linkevicius emphasized that he is proud that he knew Boris Nemtsov personally. “We pay respect to Nemtsov and to all those who value freedom, who know its price and understand that it can’t be taken for granted but must be earned and protected,” emphasized Linkevicius.
The daughter of the Russian oppositionist, Zhanna Nemtsova thanked the Lithuanian authorities for renaming the square. On May 23rd, the city Council of Vilnius made the decision on renaming the square, which is located in front of the Russian embassy. A Memorial tablet with the square name was also placed near the embassy on June 10th.
Boris Nemtsov's square was also opened in Washington last February. After this, the Russian Embassy in the United States gained the address of 1 Boris Nemtsov Plaza. Officials of the Russian Federation expressed their irritation with the new address of their US embassy.
Boris Nemtsov was shot in the back and killed on Bolshoy Moskvoretsky Bridge near the Kremlin in Moscow, on the night of February 28, 2015. The perpetrators were sentenced by the Russian court to long prison terms but the real masterminds behind the oppositionist’s murder were never established.