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European Court Condemns Moscow Over Katyn Decision

File photo of the exhumation of dead bodies in Katyn in 1943
File photo of the exhumation of dead bodies in Katyn in 1943
The European Court of Human Rights has condemned Russia for failing to share the findings of an investigation into the 1940 massacre of 20,000 Polish war prisoners by Soviet secret police in Russia's Katyn forest.

The October 21 ruling in Strasbourg said that Moscow had "failed to comply with its obligations" under the European Convention on Human Rights. However, the court said it did not have competence to rule on Moscow's handling of the investigation as too much time had passed between the massacre and the entry into force of the Convention in 1953.

The ruling came in response to a petition by victims' descendants, who demanded that Russia release full documentation of the massacre.

Rights watchdog Amnesty International expressed disappointment with the court's ruling, calling it "a missed opportunity to ensure" that Moscow accepts responsibility for its deeds.

With reporting by AP and BBC
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