KGB Considers Commemoration of Stalin’s Repressions ‘Inexpedient’

2007 2007-02-14T10:00:00+0200 1970-01-01T03:00:00+0300 en The Human Rights Center “Viasna” The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
The Human Rights Center “Viasna”


On 13 February the chairman of the Belarusian KGB Stsyapan Sukharenka wrote a letter to the co-chairman of the committee on eternalizing memory of Stalin-era repressions’ victims, Radzim Haretski that setting up such a committee at the national level is inadvisable, Radio Racyja informs. Sukharenka believes that establishing of a state committee on commemoration of Stalin era repressions’ victims would require additional staff and expenditures for its logistical support, which is inexpedient at the present time.

Sukharenka has also told that publication of documentary historical chronicles of memory of all Belarusian regions was finished in 2004. The chronicle of each region contains a chapter Returned Names with a list of citizens wrongly accused in 1920-1950 and rehabilitated by the time of the book’s publication. In a calendar there are such days as Radaunitsa and Dziady to honor the legacy of Stalinism’s victims, as said by Sukharenka. The year 2007 has been announced the Year of a Child in Belarus. Besides, 125th anniversaries of Ianka Kupala and Iakub Kolas are celebrated this year.

As said by a historian Ihar Kuzniatsou, by this answer the KGB indirectly offers the society to independently commemorate the 70th anniversary of the tragic 1937 in Belarus. The lists of people included to the chronicles are for from being complete. At a conservative estimate, 300 000 natives of Belarus were executed during the Stalin era.

Kuzniatsou has noted: ‘Less than 10% of the names of the repressed have been included to the ‘chronicle of memory’ of Minsk, while according to most conservative estimate, more than 50 000 people were shot dead in the city’.