The European Court of Human Rights has rejected a complaint by one of Josef Stalin's grandsons over an article calling the Soviet dictator a "bloodthirsty cannibal."
The 2009 report in Russian newspaper Novaya Gazeta examined Stalin's role in the massacre of some 20,000 Polish prisoners at Katyn in 1940.
The grandson, Yevgeny Dzhugashvili, filed a defamation suit against the newspaper in a Moscow court, which ruled against him.
He later lodged a complaint with the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg, claiming the Russian court's decision violated his right to privacy.
The European court said on January 15 that there is a distinction between private life and criticism of public figures.
It said an event of significant historical importance and historical figures involved "inevitably remain open to public scrutiny and criticism."