Ukraine has been seeking international recognition of the Stalin-era famine known as the Holodomor as an act of genocide by the Soviet authorities since its parliament did so in late 2006.
The European Parliament stopped short of using the word "genocide." Its resolution "recognizes the Holodomor (the artificial famine of 1932-1933 in Ukraine) as an appalling crime against the Ukrainian people, and against humanity."
According to the resolution, the Holodomor "was cynically and cruelly planned by [Soviet leader Joseph] Stalin's regime in order to force through the Soviet Union's policy of collectivization of agriculture against the will of the rural population in Ukraine."
Estimates vary widely as to the number of deaths in Ukraine in the early 1930s caused by the forced collectivization, along with the devastating purges of the Ukrainian intelligentsia, religious leaders and politicians under Stalin. Some sources cite figures of over 7 million.
The EU parliament also urged "the countries which emerged following the break-up of the Soviet Union to open up their archives on the Holodomor in Ukraine of 1932-1933 to comprehensive scrutiny so that all the causes and consequences can be revealed and fully investigated."
Russia has consistently rejected Ukraine's interpretation of the tragic events.
The United Nations General Assembly refused in July to include in its agenda discussions on the famine, supporting Russia's recommendation to exclude the Holodomor from the UN session's discussions.
In July 2008, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe adopted a resolution that condemned the famine but stopped short of recognizing it as an act of genocide.
Add to blog
You may place this material on your blog by copying the link.
Image Galleries: The Pearl of Russia's Far East
Infographics: Nobel Peace Prize
Vladimir Putin Meets with Members of the Valdai International Discussion Club. Transcript of the Final Plenary Session
Vladimir Putin took part in the final plenary session of the Valdai International Discussion Club’s 11th meeting. The plenary session summed up the club’s work over the previous three days, which concentrated on analysing the factors eroding the current system of institutions and norms of international law.