People drink wine during a gathering to mark the anniversary of Soviet leader Joseph Stalin's death in his hometown of Gori, Georgia, March 5, 2018. REUTERS/David Mdzinarishvili
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Die-hard Communists Monday laid flowers at the tomb of Joseph Stalin in Moscow to mark the 65th anniversary of his death, as the rehabilitation of the Soviet dictator gathers pace in Russia. Although the flower-laying ceremony takes place by the dictator's tomb near the Kremlin walls every March 5, monuments to Stalin have sprung up across Russia over the past year as top officials seek to downplay the extent of his bloody purges.Last summer, a plaque honoring Stalin that was removed in the 1960s as part of Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev's process of "de-Stalinization," was restored at the Kutafin Moscow State Law University despite 20,000 people signing a petition against the plan.The head of Russia's security services last year said a "significant proportion" of those implicated in Stalin's purges were guilty of "links to foreign intelligence services" or conspiring against Soviet power.
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