The publication of KGB USSR dossiers on Czechoslovakia (1968–1969)

Prague, 20 August 2010

– on the anniversary of the occupation of Czechoslovakia, the Institute for the Study of Totalitarian Regimes is making accessible the biggest collection of documents to date concerning the history of Czechoslovakia from the archives of the former Soviet bloc. In December 2009, by virtue of a cooperation agreement (signed with a partner in Ukraine), the Institute for the Study of Totalitarian Regimes and the Security Services Archive received a collection of 330 digitized documents comprising around 1,400 pages, which originated from the Committee for State Security of the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic (KGB USSR) concerning events in Prague during the spring of 1968, the occupation of the country in August of that year, and the advent of so-called normalization in the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic (CSSR). For the leadership of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, the Ukrainian KGB regularly prepared general analyses and information reports about different aspects of the social and political situation in the CSSR. It also recorded the opinions of various social and ethnic groups, including Czechoslovak and foreign tourists. Other activities included the disclosure of anti-communist leaflets, monitoring the employees of the Czechoslovak general consulate in Kiev as well as meetings between State Security officers and their KGB colleagues, and broadcasts by Czechoslovak and foreign radio stations. The KGB USSR was also interested in the influence in Ukraine of ideas emanating from Czechoslovakia’s attempts to reform communism.