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23.05.2013

Outrage over Russian Consul’s slander of Crimean Tatars

   

It is not only Crimean Tatars who have been angered by the extraordinary comments from Vladimir Andreev, Russian Federation Consul General in Simferopol, .  Nearly fifty years since all accusations against the Crimean Tatars of collaboration as a people with the Nazis were officially retracted*, Andreev has dredged up the lie used by Stalin as pretext for the Deportation of the Crimean Tatar people from their homeland.   

Andreev advised a delegation of fighter pilots and friends of Amat-Khan Sultan who had arrived for the premiere showing in Simferopol of the film “Khaitarma” not to see it.  He asserted that it does not give the whole truth about what he called the collaboration of the Crimean Tatars and said that a Russian delegation could not be present at a film distorting the truth about the Great Patriotic War. He apparently also expressed the view that any events linked with the Deportation should include the subject of collaboration with the Nazi occupiers.

Crimean Tatars have, understandably, called for Andreev’s removal. 

Ukraine’s Foreign Ministry on 22 May issued a statement saying that V. Likhachov, the Senior Adviser to the Russian Embassy in Ukraine had been summoned to the Ministry and informed of Ukraine’s concern regarding the improper remarks made by the Russian Consul General in Simferopol V. Andreev. He was told that the Crimean Tatar People are an inalienable part of Ukraine’s multicultural society.  The Agreement on issues linked with the restoration of people deported, national minorities and groups signed in Bishkek on 9 October 1992 remains in force.  The Ukrainian Foreign Ministry therefore presumes that the official position of the Russian Federation is articulated in the provisions of that Agreement and not the opinions expressed by a Russian consul.

The Ministry expressed “the hope that the Foreign Ministry of the Russian Federation and the Russian authorities would give the appropriate assessment to Mr Andreev’s remarks, both with respect to articulation of Russia’s official position and with regard to correcting the subject of his professional activities. “

It is unlikely that Andreev and the Putin regime which is so assiduously trying to reinstate Soviet mythology and Soviet ways are unaware of the injustice of their allegations.  The assumption is probably that others are not.  The following Decree issued on 5 September 1967 by the Supreme Soviet of the USSR is well-worth noting:  

“After the liberation of the Crimea from Fascist occupation in 1944, accusations of active collaboration of a section of the Tatars resident in the Crimea with the German usurpers were groundlessly levelled at the whole Tatar population of the Crimea. These indiscriminate accusations in respect of all the citizens of Tatar nationality who lived in the Crimea must be withdrawn, the more so since a new generation of people has entered on its working and political life”.  (The text in English can be found in full here)

 

Halya Coynash

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