Support The Moscow Times!

Information on Soviet Secret Police to Remain Classified

Russia's Interdepartmental Commission for the Protection of State Secrets has refused to declassify information on the work of Soviet law enforcement services between 1917 and 1991.

This information remains relevant, its release may threaten the country's security and therefore it may not be declassified, the Commission said in response to a request that the information be declassified.

The document was published online by Ivan Pavlov, a lawyer and leader of Team 29, a human rights organization struggling for free access to information about the activities of government bodies.

In March 2014 the Commission extended the period of classification of documents from the archives of the Soviet secret police for 30 years.

A total of 60,336 people have backed an online petition on, requesting access to the archives of the Soviet secret law enforcement services including the NKVD, the GKChP and the KGB.

Read more

Independent journalism isn’t dead. You can help keep it alive.

The Moscow Times’ team of journalists has been first with the big stories on the coronavirus crisis in Russia since day one. Our exclusives and on-the-ground reporting are being read and shared by many high-profile journalists.

We wouldn’t be able to produce this crucial journalism without the support of our loyal readers. Please consider making a donation to The Moscow Times to help us continue covering this historic time in the world’s largest country.