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Moscow slams Poland’s decision on war memorials as attempt to insult memory of fallen

June 22, 2017, 20:58 UTC+3 MOSCOW
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MOSCOW, June 22. /TASS/. Moscow considers the decision on demolishing Red Army memorials made by the Polish Sejm (lower house of parliament) to be an attempt at insulting the memory of the fallen, the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Thursday, adding that this move was bound to further sour bilateral relations.

"As a special act of bullying, the Polish authorities announced this decision on the day when we mark the anniversary of the beginning of Hitler’s aggression against the Soviet Union. This is nothing more but an attempt at insulting the memory of the fallen," the statement reads. "We are confident that many in Poland reject this abominable behavior but those who carry on with the war against memorials should realize that they are instigating further tensions in Russian-Polish relations," the Russian Foreign Ministry added.

On Thursday, the Polish Sejm voted in favor of amending the de-communization law. The amendments say that monuments and other similar sites "cannot pay tribute to persons, organizations, events or dates symbolizing communism or other totalitarian systems." These memorials do not include monuments at cemeteries and other burial places, facilities not located at public areas and those erected for scientific goals as pieces of art and also monuments included in the registry of pieces of architecture.

The Polish lawmakers propose that memorials not included in these categories be demolished within 12 months after the amendments enter into force. Experts say there are at least 469 such monuments in the country, and around 250 of them are dedicated to the Red Army.

"They don’t make it a secret that the law will focus on the monuments and other memorials honoring the Red Army who liberated Poland from the Nazi rule and saved the Polish people from complete extermination," the Russian Foreign Ministry pointed out.

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