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Lithuanian Court To Summon Gorbachev To Trial Over 1991 Soviet Crackdown

Fourteen people lost their lives when Soviet forces cracked down on Lithuania's pro-independence movement in 1991 (file photo).

A court in Lithuania plans to summon former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev to a trial over the Soviet crackdown on the Baltic state's pro-independence movement in 1991.

The Vilnius Regional Court said on October 17 that it will summon Gorbachev to testify at the trial as a witness.

In January, the court started the trial of two former Soviet military officers, Russian citizens Gennady Ivanov and Yury Mel.

Lithuania charged 66 citizens of Russia, Belarus, and Ukraine last year with war crimes and crimes against humanity over the death of 13 people during the 1991 crackdown.

More than 1,000 people were also wounded when Soviet troops stormed Vilnius's TV tower on January 13, 1991.

Fourteen people lost their lives that day after another person died of a heart attack.

It was the deadliest action by the Soviet Army in trying to crush secessionist movements in the Baltic states of Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia.

Based on reporting by Delfi and Interfax