Lenin's corpse 'may find new home in Minsk'

MOSCOW, May 7 (RIA Novosti) - The body of Vladimir Lenin may go on public display in Belarus if Russia decides to remove the father of the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution from his Red Square resting place, highly placed sources have said.

Lenin's embalmed body has been displayed in a glass case in a mausoleum in Red Square since his death following a series of strokes in 1924. His continuing presence in the heart of Moscow has been an ongoing source of controversy since the breakup of the Soviet Union in 1991. It has been suggested that Lenin's body could be buried in a new national military cemetery to be opened in 2011.

Although there has been no official announcement on this, recent opinion polls suggest such a move would have the support of two thirds of Russians.

Sources close to Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko say he is ready to order the construction of a tomb similar to the iconic Red Square mausoleum for the Soviet leader's body in the capital, Minsk. They also claim that the topic has been discussed a number of times at the highest level.

Former collective farm director Lukashenko has led the former Soviet republic of Belarus since 1994, coming to power on a wave of nostalgia for the Soviet Union.

The news comes shortly after Russian Culture Minister Alexander Avdeyev said that Lenin's body was not "a culturally valuable object" for Russia.

A hole was recently blasted in the buttocks of a 10-meter bronze Lenin statue in St. Petersburg. The incident led to protests by Communist Party supporters.



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