This is an annual event that takes place in the run-up to February 23rd. For St. Petersburg firefighters, this is not only the Defender of the Fatherland Day, but also the Day of Remembrance for the firefighters who died in the line of duty. It was on this day, 30 years ago, that the Fire and Rescue Garrison of the Northern capital lost nine brothers at once when extinguishing a fire in the Leningrad Hotel - the largest number of people since the blockade.
Four years after the tragedy, in order to honor the memory of the victims, at the initiative of the current Deputy Minister of Emergencies of Russia Alexander Chupriyan, the first tournament was held, which later became a good tradition, an international one - this time representatives of the Republic of Belarus came to visit the Russians.
The beginning of the event was marked by a theatrical opening ceremony using modern technologies. As part of the program, various artists also performed, including participants in the Main Stage and Voice of the Children television projects, a Russian representative at Junior Eurovision 2020 and many others. After a minute of silence, the honorary right to open the competition was given to the State Secretary - Deputy Minister of EMERCOM of Russia Alexey Serko, having made a symbolic kick on the ball, he noted: “Today St. Petersburg is hosting the 27th mini-football tournament in memory of the dead firefighters. These competitions, which have become traditional for a long time, annually bring together not only representatives of various departments, but also from different countries. I thank all the organizers and participants of the tournament for preserving this good tradition, for preserving the memory of our fallen colleagues.
At all times, the profession of a firefighter and rescuer has always been one of the most noble and humane. Every day across the country, firefighters save thousands of human lives, sparing their own. The names of the fallen will forever remain in our hearts, in the hearts of their loved ones and comrades in arms.”
Following this, heated football battles began on the field between the teams of the Main Directorate of the Ministry of Internal Affairs in St. Petersburg and the Leningrad Region and the Ministry of Emergency Situations of the Republic of Belarus, and then between the team of departments in the districts of St. Petersburg and the Main Directorate of the Ministry of Emergency Situations of Russia in the Leningrad Region. Within the framework of the competition, traditional friendly matches will also be held between the leadership teams of the St. Petersburg Main Directorate of the EMERCOM of Russia, the Central Office of the EMERCOM of Russia, the Government of St. Petersburg and the team of artists of St. Petersburg.