November 23, 2002
KYIV. Nov 23 (Interfax-Ukraine) - The Verkhovna Rada, or
Ukrainian parliament, plans an investigation into a 1930s
famine in the country that claimed, according to various
sources, seven million to 10 million lives, the speaker
said on Saturday.
Ukraine experienced three famines in the Soviet era -
in 1921- 1923, 1932-1933 and 1946-1947. The 1930s
famine was the severest. Its estimated death toll of
seven to 10 million amounted to between 10% and
25% of Ukraine's population, which means the then
Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic was on average
losing 17 lives per minute, 1,000 per hour, and 25,000
The legislature plans a hearing, inviting "scholars,
witnesses, and members of public at large to tell from
the supreme rostrum the truth about the genocide
against the Ukrainian people," speaker Volodymyr
Lytvyn said at a concert marking the 70th anniversary
of the beginning of the disaster.
He expressed confidence that parliament would qualify
the famine as a genocide.
The famine is commemorated annually on the fourth
Saturday of November.