Prominent early russian soviet Bolshevik – Sergey Kirov – bronze bust
Item: Prominent early russian soviet Bolshevik – Sergey Kirov – bronze bust
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Sergei Mironovich Kirov born Kostrikov (1886 – 1 December 1934), was a prominent early Bolshevik leader in the Soviet Union. Kirov rose through the Communist Party ranks to become head of the party organization in Leningrad.
On 1 December 1934, Kirov was shot and killed by a gunman at his offices in the Smolny Institute. Some historians place the blame for his assassination at the hands of Joseph Stalin and believe the NKVD organized his execution, but conclusive evidence for this claim remains lacking. Kirov’s death served as one of the pretexts for Stalin’s escalation of repression against dissident elements of the Party, and disarming of the Party (every Party member was issued a revolver up to that time, when Stalin had them all taken away), culminating in the Great Purge of the late 1930s in which many of the Old Bolsheviks were arrested, expelled from the party, and executed. Complicity in Kirov’s assassination was a common charge to which the accused confessed in the show trials of the period.
The cities of Kirov, Kirovohrad, Kirovakan, and Kirovabad, as well as a few Kirovsks, were renamed in Kirov’s honor after his assassination. Following the collapse of the Soviet Union, Kirovakan and Kirovabad returned to their original names: Vanadzor and Ganja, respectively. In order to comply with decommunization laws Kirovohrad was renamed in July 2016 by the Ukrainian parliament to Kropyvnytskyi