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2015.09.08 13:45

Russia plans additional payments for destroyers of Lithuanian guerrilla

  Russia’s President Vladimir Putin signed a decree on Thursday on additional endowments to former officers who annihilated Lithuanian guerrilla who fought for Lithuanian independence during the Soviet rule.

Russia’s President Vladimir Putin signed a decree on Thursday on additional endowments to former officers who annihilated Lithuanian guerrilla who fought for Lithuanian independence during the Soviet rule.

Among the persons entitled to the endowments, the decree lists “various categories of servicemen who took part in combat operations to liquidate the nationalist underground movements on the territories of Ukraine, Belarus, Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia in the period between January 1, 1944 and December 31, 1951.”

The individuals are listed along with participants of the World War II and former Nazi prisoners, they will all receive life-long monthly endowments.

The guerrilla war against the Soviet rule of Lithuania took place between 1944 and 1953. In Lithuania, it was the strongest than in other Baltic states.

Large NKVD forces were deployed in Lithuania to fight the guerrilla. The forces included up to 20,000 members in 1945 and up to 14,000 in 1946. The Soviet officials established “destroyer battalions” under NKVD to combat the Lithuanian guerrilla.

The repressive institutions deported guerrilla families and supporters to the Siberia, tortured participants of resistance movements and used to discard half-naked bodies of killed guerrilla on central squares of small towns across Lithuania.

About 20,000 guerrilla were killed during the 1944–1953 guerrilla war against the Soviet rule, in addition to about 186,000 who were arrested and locked up in prisons.

In March of 2014, the Lithuanian Constitutional Court ruled that the Soviet regime is responsible for international crimes in Lithuania, which can be qualified as crimes against humanity and war crimes.

Large guerrilla units of up to 100 men were formed in 1944-1946, there were a total of up to 30,000 guerrilla across the country. They controlled the whole of Lithuania with the exception of cities.

They disturbed elections of the Soviet rule, fired at polling stations and fought against forced establishment of collective farms.

After losing about 10,000 men in battles, the guerrilla set up smaller groups in the second phase in 1946-1948, digging underground bunkers. Centralized structures were formed in 1948-1953, however, were soon destroyed.

Although the guerrilla war was lost, Lithuanian historians maintain that the Lithuanian freedom fighters proved that Lithuania’s 1940 incorporation into the Soviet Union was against the nation’s will, furthermore, compensated for the idleness of the Lithuanian government and army.

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