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27 May 2013
An exhibition featurings photos and documents “The Burned Villages. Memorial Sites in Belarus” has opened at the Russian House of Science and Culture in Berlin. The event is timed to the 70th anniversary of the tragedy in the Khatyn village. The exposition is prepared by the Belarusian embassy to Germany together with the Department for Archives and Records Management of the Justice Ministry of the Republic of Belarus on basis of records provided by the National Archives of the Republic of Belarus and the Belarusian State Archives of Films, Photographs and Sound Recordings.

The exhibition features 25 photographs taken in different years depicting the commemoration of the Nazi victims in Belarus, and over 20 copies of the unique documentary evidence of the crimes committed by the Nazis in Belarus during the Second World War.

The exhibition opening was attended by the ambassadors of Belarus and Russia in Germany, members of other CIS countries’ diplomatic missions, the German Foreign Ministry, president of the German People’s Union for the Care of War Graves, representatives of culture institutions and public organizations.

The participants were shown two fragments of the television report from the opening ceremony of the Khatyn Memorial Complex in 1969, including the address by the witness of the Khatyn tragedy, Josef Kaminsky. Pianist Margarita Bryndina performed the Songs of the War Years programme.

The exhibition will run until 7 June 2013.

22 May 2013
The State Archives of Minsk Region has prepared and published a collection of essays entitled The State Archives of Minsk Region: Pages of History.

The publication of the collected essays was timed to the 75th anniversary of the Archive. The book includes articles on the history of the archive and its subdivisions, biographies of the archive’s directors, illustrations, a list of the publications of records from the State Archives of Minsk Region published in the 1950s – 2010s.

This scholarly edition was prepared by the group of authors: V.M. Matokh (chief of the authors team, head of the records publication and use division), Yu.S. Romashko (archive director), E.E. Nevedomskaya and I.A. Nagornaya (archive research assistants). The scholarly editor is S.V. Zhumar, cand. hist. sci.; reviewer is M.F. Shumeiko, cand. hist. sci.

The book is intended for archivists, historians, specialists in humanities and everyone interested in the history of archives and archive business, the history of Belarus and Belarusian culture.

18 May 2013
The Department for Archives and Records Management of the Justice Ministry of the Republic of Belarus (Department) and the Central Laboratory for Microfilming and Restoration of Records of the National Archival Holding of the Republic of Belarus (TsLMRD NAF) held the Belarusian-Russian workshop “Restoration and Preservation of Archival Records” with the participation of the deputy chief of the Laboratory of Records Microfilming and Restoration at the Russian State Archives of Scientific-Technical Documentation (LMRD RGANDT), restorer of highest category I.S. Sharapova.

The workshop assembled archivists from six regions and the city of Minsk in Belarus – heads of records preservation departments, chiefs of archive repositories, specialists in records preservation, restorers at the state archives, in all, over 70 people.

The workshop heard reports from the representatives of the Department, LMRD RGANDT, TsLMRD NAF, the Republic-level Technical Laboratory of Security Microfilming of Permanent Records, and the National Historical Archives of Belarus, followed by the presentations. As part of the exchange of experience, the specialists shared their approaches to solving the issues of records preservation and restoration. With a special interest the participants discussed the issues of records conservation, chemical and biological analysis, restoration methods. On the second day, at the TsLMRD NAF restoration room I. S. Sharapova conducted a master class on the restoration of records integrity by the method of manual filling with paper pulp.

Department director Vladimir Adamushko gives a welcome speech to the workshop participants



 I. S. Sharapova conducts a master class on records restoration



06 May 2013
On 6 May 2013 an exhibition was opened at the UNESCO headquarters (Paris, the French Republic) as part of the 4th meeting of the members states of the Forum of Slavic Cultures entitled “The History of Slavic Capitals in the Light of Archival Records“.

The exhibition will make known the records available from the National Archival Holdings of the Republic of Belarus. In all, the project encompasses the documentary materials from 13 Slavic countries: Belarus, Bulgaria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Macedonia, Poland, Russia, Slovakia, Serbia, Slovenia, Croatia, Czechia, Montenegro and Ukraine.

The exhibition catalogue is to be presented during the opening ceremony.

Attending the event is Mr. Pavel Latushko, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Belarus to France.

18 April 2013
On 17-19 April 2013 on the invitation of the Chief Archivist of Lithuania Mr. Ramojus Kraujalis the delegation of Belarusian archivists pay a visit to the Republic of Lithuania. The delegation includes the director of the Department for Archives and Records Management of the Justice Ministry of the Republic of Belarus V. Adamushko and the director of the National Historical Archives of Belarus D. Yatsevich.

During the visit the Belarusian archivists will attend the Office of the Chief Archivist of Lithuania and take part in the opening of the joint Lithuanian-Belarusian exhibition of historical documents “The Uprising of 1863-1864 in Lithuania” and the scholarly conference on the 1863 uprising in Lithuania. The documentary exhibition “The Uprising of 1863-1864 in Lithuania” includes copies of documents from the holdings of the National Historical Archives of Belarus in Minsk and the National Historical Archives of Belarus in Grodno.

The director of the Department for Archives and Records Management of the Justice Ministry of the Republic of Belarus Mr. V. Adamushko will have talks with the Chief Archivist of Lithuania Mr. Ramojus Kraujalis to discuss the forms of bilateral cooperation between Lithuanian and Belarusian archivists and the exchange of practices aimed at improving the activities of archival institutions in both countries.

15 April 2013
Presently 79 official heraldic symbols for administrative and territorial units in Vitebsk Region have been approved by decrees of the President of the Republic of Belarus – 42 coat of arms and 37 flags. Their use in everyday life is expanding with each year. The relevant coat of arms have been installed at the entrance roads to nearly all the districts in Vitebsk Region. The illuminated boards with images of coat of arms for Vitebsk Region and the old town of Vitebsk have been fixed on the high edifices in Vitebsk.

An interesting idea was proposed by the director of the Vitebsk State Vocational School, Irina Kiseleva, to use the coat of arms of Vitebsk towns and districts in their educational process. The college teachers and students have designed, tailored and embroidered a series of evening holiday dresses with the images of coat of arms on them and the names of the relevant district inscribed.

The collection now includes 22 heraldic dresses. The most beautiful of these indeed presents the coat of arms of the Vitebsk Region itself. The college girls have already shown their original collection of heraldic dresses at a number of contests, youth presentations, and such important festivals in Belarus as the 1150 anniversary of the town of Polotsk and the Day of Written Language in Glubokoe.

03 April 2013
On 2 April 2013 an exhibition of records was opened at the House of Representatives of the National Assembly of the Republic of Belarus entitled The Glorious Sons of Belarus. The Project is dedicated to the 110th anniversary of the birth of V. Kozlov, 100th anniversary of S. Pritytsky, and 95th anniversary of P. Masherov. The exhibition was prepared by the National Archives of the Republic of Belarus on the basis of records available in its holdings. The opening of the exhibition was accompanied with the newsreel presented by the Belarusian State Archives of Films, Photographs and Sound Recordings.

The chairman of the House of Representatives of the National Assembly of the Republic of Belarus V. Andreichenko, deputy chairman of the House of Representatives V. Guminsky, the first deputy head of the Presidential Administration A. Radkov, deputies of the House of Representatives and the invited persons who assembled at the opening of the second session of the Parliament’s lower chamber got acquainted with the exposition.

The director of the Department for Archives and Records Management of the Justice Ministry of the Republic of Belarus V. Adamushko made a review of the records on display.

28 March 2013
On 27 March 2013 the Department for Archives and Records Management of the Justice Ministry of the Republic of Belarus held a board meeting to discuss the issues of the commercial operation of the Automated State Archives Information System (Archive AIS) in the state archives, the Department’s Thematic Plan of Research and Development in 2013 and the Final Report on R&D in 2012.

On the first issue it was noted that the main task of the commercial operation of the Archive AIS is to create the conditions for its stable work and the preservation of the database contents. In ensuring the effective functionality of the Archive AIS the Department, the archive and RM agencies and the state archives solve issues of legal, organizational, software, hardware, and personnel matters. The department board took a resolution aimed at improving the Archive AIS and enhancing its operational performance.

The department board has approved the Thematic Plan of R&D in 2013 and the Final Report on R&D in 2012.

25 March 2013
On 21 March 2013 the press centre of the Press House held a press conference for mass media representatives from the Republic of Belarus and the Russian Federation devoted to the publication of a collection of documents and materials, Winterzauber. Nazi Punitive Operation in the Belarusian-Latvian Border Areas, February -– March 1943. The book was prepared and published by the Department for Archives and Records Management of the Justice Ministry of the Republic of Belarus (Department) and the Russian Historical Memory Foundation for Assistance to Urgent Historical Research (Moscow).

Participants at the event were the Department’s head for scholarly use of documents and information division G. Zholnerkevich, the chief archivist at the National Archives of the Republic of Belarus V. Selemenev, deputy chief editor of the newspaper Zvyazda V. Kluchnik, coordinator of the international project Raising of the Status of the Surviving Residents of the Burned Villages in Belarus N. Kirillova, the director of the Russian Historical Memory Foundation for Assistance to Urgent Historical Research (Moscow) A. Dyukov.

The press conference dealt with the issues of the Nazi policy in the struggle against the Partisan movement in Belarusian territory, in particular the history of the punitive operation named Winterzauber in February-March 1943 in the area of Osveya, Drissa, Rossony (Republic of Belarus) and Sebezh (Russian Federation) districts. During the operation 439 inhabited localities were burned by the Nazis, more than 10,000 residents perished, and over 6,000 people were sent to forced labour.

The participants at the press conference gave special attention to the issues of increasing the status of the residents of the burned Belarusian villages and discussed the preparation of an electronic database of the Belarusian villages burned in World War II 1941-1944 and its placement in the Internet.

20 March 2013
On 20 March 2013 a mobile exhibition was opened at the Minsk-based Johannes Rau International Centre for Education and Exchange dedicated to the opening of the international scholarly conference Khatyn 1943 – 2013. Events. People. Memory.

The organizers of the exhibition are the Department for Archives and Records Management of the Justice Ministry of the Republic of Belarus, the National Archives of the Republic of Belarus, the Khatyn State Memorial Complex, the Belarusian State Archives of Films, Photographs and Sound Recordings in Dzerzhinsk and the Zonal State Archives in Borisov.

The exhibition is created in two versions: a stationary exposition of the original records exhibited at the National Archives of the Republic of Belarus and a mobile exposition of the digital copies of the documents and photographs placed on eight stands at the Johannes Rau International Educational Centre in Minsk.

The bulk of the exhibition are the records from the National Archives of the Republic of Belarus that detail the crimes committed by the Nazi occupants and their accomplices against the civilian population in the village of Khatyn. These are the documents created by the Partisans and the local people, the German inquests and reports concerning the events of that day, the Partisan press, the certificates and lists of the victims, documents submitted by the eye-witnesses of the Khatyn tragedy and by the war criminals who were punished after the war.

Khatyn was not the only village destroyed by the Nazis in 1941-1944. In all, 628 villages in Belarus shared the fate of Khatyn. The reports and lists of the victims displayed at the exhibition bear testimony to the punitive operations carried out by the Nazis and the burning by them of other Belarusian villages.

The Khatyn Memorial Complex is one of the sites in Belarus most visited by the Belarusian citizens as well as the foreign guests and tourists from different countries.

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