Mikhail Gorbachev’s funeral will be held in Moscow today. The last farewell to the former leader of the USSR will take place in the Columned Hall of the House of Trade Unions in Moscow, the funeral itself at the Novodevichy Cemetery. Gorbachev will not have a full state funeral, neither Vladimir Putin nor top state officials will attend the ceremony.
According to Gorbachev’s daughter Irina, the final farewell will take place in the Columned Hall of the House of Trade Unions in Moscow, after which he will be buried at the Novodevichy Cemetery, where he has a reserved grave next to his late wife Raisa.
Many high-ranking politicians, intellectuals, artists and other important personalities were buried at the Novoděvičí cemetery. For example, the grave of writers Mikhail Bulgakov, Anton Pavlovich Chekhov or Nikolai Gogol is located there. The first Russian president Boris Yeltsin or the former Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev also lie there. Most of the other Soviet leaders were buried near the Kremlin wall.
Before that, the last farewell to the Nobel Peace Prize winner Gorbachev will be held in the Columned Hall of the House of Trade Unions in the metropolis, which in the past served many times as a place of farewell to high-ranking representatives of the USSR. For example, the remains of the leader of the Bolshevik revolution Vladimir Ilyich Lenin, the dictator Joseph Stalin and other Soviet leaders such as Leonid Brezhnev, Yuri Andropov and Konstantin Chernenko were exhibited there, the AP agency recalled.
At the same time, she pointed out that Gorbachev’s relatively inconspicuous funeral reflects the Kremlin’s concern about his legacy. While in the West the late politician is widely revered for, among other things, his role in ending the Cold War, in Russia many people blame him for the collapse of the Soviet Union and the subsequent economic disruption of the country.
The Reuters agency previously wrote that Putin denied Gorbachev the full state honors Yeltsin received after his death in 2007. At that time, Putin declared a day of national mourning and, together with world leaders, attended a spectacular funeral in Moscow’s Cathedral of Christ the Savior.
Now Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov has said that the program will not allow the president to attend Gorbachev’s funeral. On Thursday, however, Putin laid flowers at Gorbachev’s coffin. According to Peskov, the ceremony will include “elements” of a state funeral, such as an honor guard, and the state is also helping to organize it. (ČTK)