Russians are marking the 60th anniversary of the death of Soviet dictator Josef Stalin today, with devotees laying flowers at his tomb in Moscow while critics blame the former Soviet leader for millions of deaths in purges and prison camps.
Stalin led the Soviet Union from 1924 until his death in 1953. Communists credit him with leading the country to victory in the Second World War while others condemn the brutal purges that killed millions.
The cover of weekly Liberal Moskovskie Novosti today featured “Stalin. Farewell” with the dictator’s face scribbled over with childish graffiti. Staunch Communist daily Sovetskaya Rossiya ran a cover story on Stalin headlined “His time will come”.
An opinion poll commissioned by the Carnegie Endowment revealed that Stalin has remained widely admired in Russia and other ex-Soviet nations despite his repressions.