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1 Aug 2018

Railway artifacts added to WW2 museum Stalin Line near Minsk

MINSK, 1 August (BelTA) – An exposition dedicated to the hard labor and combat accomplishments of railway workers has been opened in the historical and cultural complex Stalin Line near Minsk, BelTA has learned.

Belarusian Defense Minister Andrei Ravkov, Internal Affairs Minister Igor Shunevich, and Head of Belarusian Railways Vladimir Morozov took part in the opening ceremony.

Vladimir Morozov said: “The exposition represents not only an opportunity to take a closer look at history. First and foremost, it is a monument to the generation of veterans, who have lived a very difficult and heroic life. Railway workers are famed for their labor accomplishments and combat deeds.”

Stalin Line Complex Director Alexander Metla remarked that only the Stalin Line complex allows visitors to take a close look at an armored train. “The war is now a thing of the distant past. No armored train has been left standing. We should pay a tribute of remembrance to our grandfathers and forefathers, who shed blood in the name of our motherland during the war. May this armored train stay always in reserve. May it never be used in battle. But people should know that capable hands take care of the defense of our country,” he stressed.

The exposition has been created upon the initiative of the charity foundation Memory of Afghanistan (Pamyat Afgana) by Belarusian Railways in association with the Defense Ministry and the Belarusian road construction and maintenance company Belavtodor. The exposition is built around a recreated World War Two armored train, which comprises an engine, two armored cars, and a flatbed platform with an antiaircraft cannon. The steam engine was presented by Belarusian Railways. It had to be transported from Krichev, Mogilev Oblast all the way to the Stalin Line complex near Minsk. Specialists of the Krichev engine depot restored the steam engine to its former glory. The restorers created dummy armored cars fitted with a T-34 tank turret and Maxim machine guns. The flatbed platform bears a 37mm automatic antiaircraft cannon and a BM-8 multiple-launch rocket system.

Some railway infrastructure objects had to be restored to resemble the 1940s as much as possible. A railway bridge was installed in association with the Belarusian Defense Ministry.

The effort produced a section of a railway line dating back to the early 1940s. The railway line features a track with a switch and an armored train on top, a railway bridge across a pond, a level crossing, a pre-war railway station, and several other things.

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