Arseny Roginsky: There must be no public commemoration of Stalin

posted 26 Feb 2015, 12:45 by Rights in Russia   [ updated 26 Feb 2015, 12:53 ]
25 February 2015

Source: (info
A proposal by representatives of the United Russia party to include Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin in a collective monument to holders of the Order of Victory military decoration on Poklonnaya Hill in Moscow has provoked criticism from the Russian human rights community.

"This public commemoration of Stalin will be perceived by everyone as the adoption of a positive stance toward this man by the government and the people of Russia. This is out of the question," historian Arseny Roginsky, head of the International Memorial Society and a political prisoner during the Soviet era, told Interfax on 25 February.

Historians and human rights activists have also been fiercely critical of a proposal by the Russian Communist Party to rename the city of Volgograd ‘Stalingrad’.

"A city cannot be named after a man who was the organiser, initiator and implementer of mass terror, who destroyed the Russian peasantry in the years of collectivisation, who ordered the shooting of more than 700,000 people in 1937-1938 alone. It was in these years that he decapitated our army. Put simply, the city must not carry the name of a criminal," said Arseny Roginsky, commenting on the proposal of the KPRF to change the name of Volgograd to Stalingrad.

Photo of Arseny Roginsky. © Yulia Ryzhenko /

Translated by Helen Corbett