Belarus suffered heavily from Nazi occupation during WWII. 25% of its people died during the war and hundreds of villages were decimated. Minsk was a major center of the resistance movement. For this, Minsk was awarded the title Hero City in 1974. The Monument consists of the column with heroic scenes, an eternal flame, and granite blocks for each Soviet hero city. There is a passage below the memorial with an illuminated wreath of colored glass and plaques with the names of 566 soldiers.