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MOSCOW, December 16. /TASS/. Former Soviet Baltic republics of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania acted as recipients finances, not donors during the period of what they call now ‘Soviet occupation’ and that is why their claims for reparations totally ungrounded, Konstantin Kosachev, the chairman of the foreign policy committee in the upper house of Russian parliament said on Wednesday.
He said it at a presentation of a collection of documents titled ‘The Soviet Model of Economy: the All-Union Center the Baltic Republics. From 1953 through March 1965’ that was held at the Federation Council, the upper house.
"In many ways, this theme is subjected to manipulations and misuses for political purposes and each time it becomes an instrument for attaining political objectives," Kosachev said.
He stressed, in part, the proclivity of politicians in Vilnius, Riga and Tallinn to decry the period of ‘Soviet occupation’ as a time when Moscow allegedly sucked the Baltic republics dry - a claim that he finds to be devoid of any grounds.
"I think anyone who has a record of living in the Soviet Union will agree the three Baltic republics were always given priority in terms of development, as funds were allocated to them and highly qualified specialists were sent there," Kosachev said.
"The Baltics were beyond any doubt recipients not donors within the USSR and they drew obvious benefits from staying within the mighty Soviet state - at any rate, the benefits of an economic and social nature," he said.
Kosachev recalled the justice ministers of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania had come up with a joint initiative, which they embodied in a formal document in order to try and lodge claims against Russia as the legal successor to the USSR.
"These were certain claims for occupation that might be followed by demands for compensations," he said. "And although this initiative was believably disavowed later, the leaders of the states obviously keep it on the agenda while the people willing to gain political scores on the theme remain in abundance."