Re: Deportee's children seek €500,000 compensation from Russia for mother's deportation
- From: vkarlamov1@xxxxxxxxx
- Date: Thu, 20 Sep 2007 00:03:13 -0700
On Sep 18, 5:41 pm, lorad...@xxxxxx wrote:
On Sep 18, 4:13 pm, "santak...@xxxxxxxxx" <santak...@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
by Tomas Vaiseta
translation from “Lietuvos rytas” (“Lithuanian Morning”) of 18
People who have suffered repression and deportation at the hands of
the Soviet government are going to battle for compensation for non-
material damages. Two children and a grandchild of former Papilė
village (Akmenė Region) resident, former deportee Ona Puskunigienė
have initiated a lawsuit against Russia and are demanding that the
Court award them €500,000 (about 1.7 million litai). O. Puskunigienė
has already died, but her children and granddaughter have estimated
the harm she suffered to be worth €200,000, and their own at €100,000
“These people have taken into account their suffering due to loss of
freedom, repression, deportation and persecution. This matter
affected the whole family and continued for many years, causing much
suffering”, lawyer Kęstutis Čilinskas told the newspaper “Lietuvos
rytas” (“Lithuanian Morning”).
In 1951, when Lithuania was occupied by the USSR, Šiauliai District
Court sentenced O. Puskunigienė to 25 years' loss of freedom for “anti-
Soviet agitation” and exiled her to a concentration camp in the Perm
district of Siberia. Later she was constantly harassed by the
“Special Services” of the USSR.
In 2002 Lithuania's Supreme Court quashed O. Puskunigienė's “criminal
record” – ruling that she had been illegally repressed and sentence by
the Soviet occupation régime. This is the first time that a lawsuit
for compensation for damages suffered as a result of Russia's illegal
occupation of Lithuania has been initiated. Lawyer K. Čilinskas
acknowledges that it may be difficult. The suit will be heard by
Kaunas District Court. Notice of the lawsuit will be communicated by
Lithuania's Department of Foreign Affairs to the Russian Embassy,
which will decide who will represent the Russian Government as
“It all depends on the Lithuanian courts. The case has a foundation
not only in Lithuanian law but also in bilateral agreements with
Russia, i.e. Russia has made official commitments. One of these is to
recognise the outcome of cases in Lithuanian courts”, explains K.
Čilinskas, confirming that there is truly a possibility of damages
being awarded. “Russia's reaction will reveal its attitude toward the
years of occupation. Certainly, one might expect that Russia will be
reluctant to honour its obligations. If that happens, we will be able
to appeal to the European Court of Human Rights”, says the lawyer. He
confirms that the European Court of Human Rights has already passed
decisions unfavourable to Russia more than once. Its judgements are
binding on Russia, and if Russia refuses to comply, it may incur
According to lawyer K. Čilinskas, such cases make progress only when
initiated by specific individuals, not when they are class actions on
behalf of an entire nation. “It is most important that this case go
forward. Perhaps later there will be more such plaintiffs, and
eventually it may be possible to raise issues concerning the payment
of damages to Lithuania for harm suffered because of the Soviet
Excellent. This way russkian bank accounts in Germany can be attached
for the necessary compensation.
Topol will have to eat ramen noodles for a while.
If this were all serious and not psychopathy, I would have been very
happy and very rich. My own familiy has suffered to the tune of
$1,000,000 at the hands of Stalin and of $3,000,000 at the hands of
Hitler. I suspect that since my mothers family was exterminated in
Daugavpils in hte Holocaust, some $500,000 from the Latvian government
would be due us as well. I wish we could sue Russia, Germany and
Latvia in the European Court of Human Rights.
I would estimate that the former citizens of USSR there are:
100,000,000 victims of Stalin for a total of $100,000,000,000,000
(that's what? 1000 trillion dollars?)
150,000,000 victims of Hitler for a total of $150,000,000,000,000
(that's what? 150 trillion dollars?)
300,000 relatives of Jewish and Slavic victims of Latvian holocaust
for a total of $300,000,000,000 (that's what? 300 billion dollars?)
But I bet Russia, Germany and Latvia will refuse to pay even a penny.
Here in America, our politicians have made sure that the US government
will never pay a penny to any of its victims.
Sovereign immunity, or crown immunity, is a type of immunity that in
common law jurisdictions traces its origins from early English law.
Generally speaking it is the doctrine that the sovereign or government
cannot commit a legal wrong and is immune from civil suit or criminal
prosecution; hence the saying, the king (or queen) can do no wrong.
In the United States, the federal government has sovereign immunity
and may not be sued unless it has waived its immunity or consented to
Very wise, because if all those "collateral damges" from Viet Nam,
Cambodia, Chile, Panama, former Yugoslavia and Iraq were allowed to
sue the US governemnt, USA would go bancrupt 10 times over....
Do Germany, Russia and Latvia have the same rules? Or can we hope for
a big restitution? I sure feel I deserve it.
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