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A Memorial meeting at the monument to victims of Soviet opression on Trotsky Square in St Petersburg. Photo: Catriona Bass

“The truth is with us! We will be victorious!” Few people outside Russia seem to have picked up on the fact that Vladimir Putin chose to end his speech to the United Russia congress last Sunday with a version of Stalin’s famous challenge to Germany at the start of the second world war.

This week the human rights organisation Memorial held a press conference in St Petersburg, discussing the government’s efforts to restrict access to the…

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