In Smolensk, the recently reconstructed Katyn Memorial was desecrated. Attackers painted the inscriptions on the Memorial Wall with the names of the shot Soviet citizens. Executive Director of the Russian Military Historical Society (RMHS) Vladislav Kononov made strong declarations condemning the act of vandalism.
"It does not fit in my head. Desecration of graves is the worst thing imaginable. Those who did this are likened not just to "ivans who do not remember kinship", are likened to nationalists. If this is done consciously, and most likely, it is, then it's not just hooliganism, it's extremism. Criminals should be found and punished as severely as possible," said Vladislav Kononov.
The head of the Scientific Department of the RMHS Yury Nikiforov believes that the act of vandalism is aimed at annihilation of efforts to strengthen Russian-Polish relations.
"Hooliganism has anti-Polish implications, since the creation of the memorial and museum in Katyn, as well as all the activities of the RMHS to perpetuate the memory of the people buried there, are aimed at strengthening mutual understanding between Russia and Poland. The actions of vandals discredit this work. Someone benefits from confrontation between our countries," said Yuri Nikiforov.
Reconstruction of previously built and creation of new museum-exhibition and memorial sites near Smolensk was carried out by the Russian Military Historical Society and the State Central Museum of Contemporary Russian History. The grand opening of the renovated memorial took place on April 20, 2018. The memorial complex now includes the Memorial Wall of Soviet citizens - victims of political repressions, the new museum and exhibition center "Russia and Poland. The twentieth century. Pages of History" (with display on the history of Russian-Polish relations in the 20th and early 21st centuries), renovated entrance group. The emotional center of the complex is a wall with the names of the repressed persons and the memorial "Shooting" (author - academician of the Russian Academy of Arts, sculptor Andrei Kovalchuk).
Reference about the activities of The Russian Military Historical Society