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26 Jun, 2007 07:49

Soviet soldier reburied in Russia

The remains of a Soviet soldier who died in Estonia during WW2 have been reburied in his hometown in Russia.

The ashes of Lieutenant Vasily Volkov’s were laid to rest in his home town of Kashin in the Tver region, north-east of Moscow. Hundreds of people came to pay their last respects to the man who left home at the age of eighteen in 1941. He fought the Nazis until 1944, when he died while liberating Tallinn.

His remains were recently removed from a mass grave in the centre of  Tallinn, where a Soviet war memorial known as the Bronze Soldier used to stand.

The monument was dismantled in late April this year and moved to a military cemetery in the suburbs of the Estonian capital. This caused mass riots in Tallinn and some other Estonian cities.

The remains of twelve Soviet soldiers were buried near the monument.  It has been suggested that their relatives rebury them. Vasily Volkov is the second of the twelve to be reburied.

“He left our town as a volunteer in 1941, was fighting he has two awards of the Red Star,” said Yury Mayasov from Military Memorial Company, city of Kashin, Tver region.

At the time, Lieutenant Volkov was laid to rest near the Bronze soldier monument in the Estonian capital.

But in April 2007 the Estonian authorities removed the monument and exhumed the remains of the Soviet soldiers.

“As soon as we knew that the remains of a man from our town was among those buried there, we helped the family to get the remains,” explained Yury Pavlov, War Veterans organisation of Kashin.

Volkov's sister and niece welcomed his remains in Kashin, where hundreds of people came to witness the re-burial.
“When his remains were in the center of Tallinn near the Soviet soldier monument we went there several times. Everything was fine. Lots of flowers were brought to his tomb on the 9th of May. But since it was disturbed – I think it’s better for him to lie in his motherland,” expressed Tatyana Volkova.