A general farewell to the late Mikhail Gorbachev, the last General Secretary of the Communist Party and the only head of the USSR, began in Moscow. The coffin with his body was displayed in the colonnaded hall of the House of Trade Unions in Moscow, opposite the Kremlin. Among other things, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban went to Russia to pay tribute to the deceased politician. The US ambassador in Moscow also announced his attendance at the ceremony. Russian President Vladimir Putin did not attend the funeral.
Mikhail Gorbachev passed away Tuesday night at the age of 91. The politician will be buried at the Novodevichy Cemetery next to his wife Raisa, who died in 1999. Many distinguished Russians are buried in this cemetery, including the first president of post-Soviet Russia, Boris Yeltsin.
The Kremlin announced earlier that President Vladimir Putin would not attend the funeral. According to media reports, former President Dmitry Medvedev, deputy head of the Russian Security Council, came to bid Gorbachev’s farewell.
Foreign guests at Gorbachev’s funeral
Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban also attended Gorbachev’s funeral. According to AFP, citing Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, Putin does not plan to meet Orban during his unexpected visit to Moscow.
A spokesman for the US State Department announced, on Friday, that the US ambassador to Russia, John Sullivan, will attend the funeral of the leader of the Soviet Union.
As noted by Reuters, many Western heads of state and government, who are likely to attend the funeral under normal circumstances, did not come to Moscow on Saturday due to the tensions arising from Russia’s aggression against Ukraine between Moscow and the West.
The last farewell to the last leader of the USSR
The funeral ceremony of the first (and last) president of the USSR began with a ceremony in the column hall of the Moscow Council of Trade Unions opposite the Kremlin, where all the former leaders of the USSR, except for Nikita Khrushchev, were bid farewell. There was a coffin with the corpse of a politician on display.
In front of the entrance, according to the independent Meduza portal, there is a row of people who came to bid farewell to the last leader of the USSR. According to Medusa, thousands of people gathered there. During the farewell ceremony, a guard of honor was issued.
Main image source: PAP / EPA / MAXIM SHIPENKOV
“Coffee enthusiast. Troublemaker. Incurable introvert. Subtly charming twitter scholar. Award-winning social mediaholic. Internet buff.”