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ID number:863092
Published: 03.04.2013.
Language: English
Level: College/University
Literature: 18 units
References: Not used

The Red Army occupied them in the summer of 1940, and on 14 June 1941, the NKVD (the Soviet secret police, a precursor of the KGB) began to deport potential opposition leaders and all those who fell into the category of “anti-Soviet elements”. They included politicians, trade unionists, intellectuals, teachers, and wealthy landowners, government employees. Many people were deported as the result of arbitrary event. Some were denounced by neighbours, or they were taken for another family.
Men were mostly separated from family already in train stations and were told that they will be able to meet their families in the destination. These were unblushing lies. Men were sent to concentration and slave labour camps called Gulag, women with children to different districts of USSR territories. The majority of Lithuanians were taken to the Altay region and the district of Tomsk. Latvians mostly deported to Krasnoyarsk territory.
Analyzes of memories, memoirs and documents show that reasons why Latvians and Lithuanians were deported mostly are the same - targeted were mainly families who had members in leading positions in state and local governments, economy and culture, different are officially presented accusations. According to available documents, Latvians’ indictments were based on the accused relations and connections with politics, colonels etc, [Okupāciju varu politika Latvijā.1939-1941: Collection of documents 1999] in indictments of Lithuanians’ mostly appeared information about “ill-gotten” property, belonging to clerisy and being “freedom fighter”. [The Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation ca. 2011] Why documents about Latvia and Lithuania differ in this point is hard to say. In fact, accusations were mostly based on thrumped-up charges.
Even though precise instructions were given to manage these deportations, mostly these instructions were not taken into consideration. Instructions prescribed that every family had an hour to gather everything needful, included appropriate clothes. [Okupāciju varu politika Latvijā.1939-1941: Collection of documents 1999] Mostly families were drug out of their beds and given some 20 minutes to gather things without any explanation. …

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