“We know that the main ceremony will take place on September 3as well as the funeral, however the president’s schedule will not allow him to be there,” Peskov told reporters, according to AFP. However, the Russian president “laid flowers by (Gorbachev’s) coffin” at the hospital today, he added. Meanwhile, Russian media broadcast footage of the president lays red roses at Gorbachev’s coffin in the hospital – which remained open according to Russian tradition. The current head of the Kremlin stood by the coffin for a moment, bowed his head, touched the edge of the coffin, crossed himself and left.
Asked whether Gorbachev would have a state funeral, Putin’s spokesman said the ceremony would include “elements” of a state funeral, such as an honor guard and other similar formalities. According to Peskov, the state is also helping with the organization of the funeral ceremony.
Putin thus denied Gorbachev the full state honors that his successor Boris Yeltsin received after his death, Reuters noted. According to her, Saturday’s farewell to the former president of the USSR will be in strong contrast to the funeral of Yeltsin, who chose Vladimir Putin as his successor. After Yeltsin’s death in 2007, Putin declared a day of state mourning and, together with world leaders, attended a spectacular state funeral in the Moscow Cathedral of Christ the Savior, writes Reuters.
Czech and world personalities react to Gorbachev’s death. Schwarzenegger: He was a hero
Gorbachev, the first and last president of the Soviet Union died on Tuesday at the age of 91. According to Gorbachev’s daughter Irina, the final farewell will take place on Saturday in the Column Hall of the House of Trade Unions. Subsequently, the ex-president will be buried at Moscow’s Novodevichy Cemetery, where he has a reserved grave next to his late wife Raisa.
The subtle tributes now being paid to Mikhail Gorbachev in Russia illustrate his low popularity in the country, AFP reported. Despite his significant reforms in the area of freedom of speech, many Russians hold him responsible for the collapse of the great power and the subsequent years of economic, social and moral crisis. In the West, on the other hand, Gorbachev is revered by many for enabling many countries break out of USSR control.
The German agency DPA has already noted that due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine and the related sanctions, there are questions about the participation of foreign guests in the funeral ceremony. In response to Western sanctions, Russia has banned many high-ranking politicians from the European Union, the United States and other Western countries from entering the country.
In Berlin, however, flags will be lowered to half-mast on Saturday, the representatives of the German capital announced today, according to the AFP agency. Gorbachev played a decisive role in the process that led to the fall of the Berlin Wall in November 1989 and the reunification of Germany in 1990.