On February the 28th, the Reconciliation of European Histories group had its first meeting of the New Year. At the meeting, group members as well as guests representing NGOs were addressed by Hungarian MEP Ágnes Hankiss on the condition of Member State archives related to the repressive apparatuses of former dictatorships and the role which the EU plays in preserving such archives. Mrs. Hankiss, the founder of an archive research institute in Hungary, described the complex differences in the legislation on archives in MS and the better and worse practices applied. She also made an overview of the existing EU documents on EU institutions archives and the efforts to promote the EU institutions archival procedures in MS. During the discussion Members expressed their opinion that the EU should have a greater say in how such archives are preserved, kept, and how the information is made accessible for researchers and the larger public, as auch archives are a valuable source for the common history ofEurope. Also, Members suggested that the issue of accessibility of archives in candidate countries should be addressed in future EU accession negotiations. The group decided to organize a hearing on the state of archives and the best practices in the MS in the latter part of the year.
Posted tagged ‘Archives’
Statement by Sandra Kalniete, Chairwoman of the REH group: On ex-Yugoslav secret communist police archives in SloveniaJune 1, 2011
Member of the European Parliament from Latvia, Ms Sandra Kalniete, is chairing an informal parliamentary group, the “Reconciliation of European Histories”. A group which consists of 38 MEPs from six political groups (EPP, SD, ALDE, Greens, ECR, and EFD) and therefore has broad political support in the EP.
This week a referendum will take place in Slovenia and voters will decide whether to allow new legislation that proposes to limit individual’s access to the Slovenian archives of the ex-Yugoslav secret communist police (SDV or UDBA). As this topic is of a great importance for the Reconciliation of European Histories group I would like to present my opinion on that matter. (more…)
The Russian Archives have posted documents which shed light on the Soviet Union’s World War II massacre of more than 20,000 Polish officers and other prominent citizens. The Soviet Union had blamed the massacres on Nazi forces who invaded in 1941. This explanation had remained the official state position until Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev acknowledged Soviet responsibility in 1990. The current Russian President, Dmitry Medvedev, has promised that more similar documents would also be released. The documents are available on the following site:
http://rusarchives.ru/publication/katyn/spisok.shtml (In Russian)
Also see: Excerpts: Beria letter to Stalin on Katyn (From BBC news in English)