MOSCOW, September 22. /TASS/. Seven busts of Soviet leaders, including Joseph Stalin and Vladimir Lenin, were unveiled at the Walk of Rulers in downtown Moscow on Friday.
Other sculptures are dedicated to Nikita Khrushchev, Leonid Brezhnev, Yuri Andropov, Konstantin Chernenko, and Mikhail Gorbachev, the last leader of the Soviet Union. Their author is Georgian-Russian sculptor and painter Zurab Tsereteli, who is the president of the Russian Academy of Arts.
"We are becoming the witnesses of an important historic event. The Walk of Rulers is a symbol of continuity and succession of our history," Russian Deputy Culture Minister Alexander Zhuravsky said.
The busts of Soviet leaders are an important part of history, he said. "Certainly, there are different assessments about these leaders, but this is our history that should not be forgotten. It is absolutely futile to fight with monuments, and we need to know history in all its diversity," Zhuravsky said.
Sculptor Tsereteli said during the work on the monuments he treated all leaders with equal respect. "On the paper history is one thing, and I wanted people to know their history and I showed it by the language of art."
The Walk of Rulers was created by the Russian Military-Historical Society in 2016 in Moscow’s Petroverigsky Lane. The busts of 33 historical figures who ruled Russia at different times - from Rurik to Alexander Kerensky - were earlier erected there. Next year, a bust to Russia’s first President Boris Yeltsin is due to be unveiled.