The Truman-Regan Medal of Freedom was awarded to Mart Laar, the former prime minister of Estonia, at the 10th Annual Truman-Reagan Medal of Freedom and Roll Call of Nations Ceremony held Friday at the Victims of Communism Memorial in Washington, D.C.
Laar has worked for the International Committee for Democracy in Cuba, the Human Rights foundation, and the international advisory council of the Victims of Communism Memorial. He also founded the Unitas Foundation.
The award is given to prominent opponents of communism and other forms of tyranny. It has previously been given to such figures as Pope John Paul II, William F. Buckley Jr., and Michael Novak.
This year, the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation filled the square around the memorial with flower wreaths, each representing a country victimized by communism.
The memorial was dedicated by President George Bush in 2007 for "the more than one hundred million victims of communism" around the world.
The keynote remarks were delivered by Vytautas Landsbergis, the Lithuanian statesman and scholar. He spoke about how the horrors of communism remain, in some people’s minds, "no tragedy, only statistics" and how the struggle of communism and freedom is an "existential rivalry between humans." Venezuelan violinist Wuilly Moisés Arteaga performed to protest the Maduro regime in Caracas.