Historian calls for revealing Latvia's KGB legacy

Latvia should publish documents detailing KGB activities during the Soviet occupation, said historian Kārlis Kangeris, who heads a commission studying documents from the Latvian branch of the KGB, in an interview to LTV on April 11.

As the time for voluntary self-reports over cooperation with KGB has passed, the KGB "sacks of Cheka files" should be published, and that would put the public at ease, said Kangeris.

He rejected worries that the process could harm the reputation or career of the listed people, as there are people whose names popped up in the "sacks of Cheka files" but the public accepted it.

The special government-appointed Commission for the Study of KGB Materials was formed after Saeima ruled that such a research study of the available documentation must proceed before the entire archive is made freely accessible to the public.

It has been clear for a long time that the records are not fully complete and therefore cannot serve as evidence for establishing the fact of collaboration by informants with a repressive agency of the Soviet Union. The end of May, 2018 has been set as the time for opening the KGB archives to the public.

A popular assumption in society is that parts of the records are kept secret because they contain material that might embarrass influential individuals still enjoying a degree of prominence today.

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