Support The Moscow Times!

Russian Who Fought With French Resistance Reported Dead at 95

Nikolai Vasenin walking in Paris with his great-grandson last summer.

MOSCOW — Nikolai Vasenin, a Russian who fought in the French resistance during World War II, died on Sunday at age 95, the TASS news agency reported.

Vasenin had been hospitalized in intensive care since Dec. 1 in Berezovsky, a town near the Urals city of Yekaterinburg, the agency reported, citing a hospital official. No cause of death was given.

A documentary film about Vasenin is scheduled to premiere in May as part of celebrations for the 70th anniversary of Victory Day.

Vasenin was captured by Nazi German troops shortly after their 1941 invasion of the Soviet Union and sent to a camp in France, but he managed to escape and joined the resistance fighters. By the end of the war, he had become the commander of his own unit.

When the war was over, he returned to the Soviet Union, but instead of being greeted as a war hero he was sent to a labor camp for 15 years. This was a fate shared by many Soviet soldiers who had fallen into enemy hands and as a result were seen by dictator Josef Stalin as potential traitors.

In an interview in October about the upcoming documentary, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said all veterans who fought against the Nazis should be honored equally.

… we have a small favor to ask. As you may have heard, The Moscow Times, an independent news source for over 30 years, has been unjustly branded as a "foreign agent" by the Russian government. This blatant attempt to silence our voice is a direct assault on the integrity of journalism and the values we hold dear.

We, the journalists of The Moscow Times, refuse to be silenced. Our commitment to providing accurate and unbiased reporting on Russia remains unshaken. But we need your help to continue our critical mission.

Your support, no matter how small, makes a world of difference. If you can, please support us monthly starting from just $2. It's quick to set up, and you can be confident that you're making a significant impact every month by supporting open, independent journalism. Thank you.

paiment methods
Not ready to support today?
Remind me later.

Read more