The Press and Information Board of the Russian Foreign Ministry says that events timed to coincide with the 60th anniversary of bloody clashes between the Latvian SS legion and the Red Army on the Velikaya river near Opochka were held on March 16 in Riga and other populated localities.
"It is noteworthy that the event at the military cemetery in Lestene, the media reports, was attended by deputies of the Latvian parliament, including of the Popular Party making part of the present government," the Russian Foreign Ministry's communique reads.
It is the opinion of Moscow that the goal pursued by these actions is "not only to discredit those who in the ranks of the fascist troops sowed death and destruction in Europe but also to try to find for their 'ideals' a place in today's political life, bring up the youth on their example." "The rehabilitation of those sentenced by the Nuremberg Tribunal, condemning both the fascist ideology and the Nazi-created machine of destruction in the form of SS formations, is the favorite topic of certain political forces in Latvia who take care of the persons stained with the blood of thousands of civilians," the communique continues.
The Foreign Ministry stresses that, "deliberately changing notions, the legionaries are sought to be presented as protectors of freedom." "But the peoples of Europe well remember what kind of 'freedom' was sown by 'the soldiers of the fuhrer'," Moscow pointed out.
"The praising of legionaries is perceived with particular indignation by veterans of the Great Patriotic War in Russia, Latvia and other countries which have paid a tremendous price for liberating the world of the brown plague," the Russian foreign policy establishment said.
"Moscow is sure that the henchmen of fascism, whatever national costumes they clad themselves, have their place in history. It is the dumpsite of history," the Press and Information Board of the Russian Foreign Ministry said.