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Published: 16 april 2012 18:37

Lithuania publishes KGB documents on persecution of Catholic Church

Dūkštų Šv. Onos bažnyčia
R.Paulauskaitės nuotr. / Dūkštų Šv. Onos bažnyčia

The Genocide and Resistance Research Centre of Lithuania has published documents on the KGB's actions against the Catholic Church during the period of the Soviet occupation.

36 documents, mostly related to anti-Church policy, ideological counter-intelligence and repressions during the Soviet times, were published on the website kgbveikla.lt. The documents include information on the KGB's operational activities, including arrests and criminal prosecution.

Among the documents, there's a report by the then Deputy Head of the KGB's Interrogation Unit on "evidence of criminal activities" by incumbent Kaunas Archbiship Sigitas Tamkevičius, priest Alfonsas Svarinskas and Panevėžys Bishop Jonas Kauneckas.

"Tamkevičius, Svarinskas and Kauneskas have systematically given openly hostile sermons during burial or religious ceremonies in various churches of the republic, defaming the Soviet public and state order, inviting worshipers to ignore Soviet laws on the separation of Church and State, activities of religious communities, and aiming to incite hostility towards atheists by identifying them with the Soviet government," the KGB officer wrote in his report.

Moreover, illegal publications and recordings of "defaming sermons" were also found in the clergymen's houses during searches.

In June 2010, the Lithuanian parliament adopted amendments to the Law on Lustration, authorizing the Genocide and Resistance Research Center to publish KGB documents and thus complete the lustration process. The kgbveikla.lt website was launched in late January for the publication of KGB documents.

In February, the Genocide and Resistance Research Center published a list of former KGB reserve officers, which contains 238 names.

Naujienų agentūros BNS informaciją atgaminti visuomenės informavimo priemonėse bei interneto tinklalapiuose be raštiško UAB „BNS“ sutikimo draudžiama.
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