5 Dec 2018 19:50

Matviyenko 'grateful' for Austria's careful preservation of Soviet war memorials

MOSCOW. Dec 5 (Interfax) - Russia appreciates the way Austria has taken care of memorials to Soviet soldiers killed during WWII, Federation Council Speaker Valentina Matviyenko said.

"We very much appreciate and are grateful to the leadership and people of Austria for their very careful preservation of the memory of Soviet soldiers who died liberating Austria from the Nazis. Austria is not one of those countries that's trying to rewrite history, and the community of Austrian historians has been doing effective work," Matviyenko said at a meeting with Wolfgang Sobotka, the president of Austria's National Council, the lower house of parliament, on Wednesday.

The current generation of politicians has a great responsibility "not to allow the belittling of the role of those who defeated fascism and not to allow the glorification of fascists and their abettors, as is the case in several countries, including ones in Europe, unfortunately," Matviyenko said.

Despite the sanctions, trade and economic relations between Russia and Austria have been intensifying, she said.

"Our trade grew more than 40% last year, and over 60% in the first nine months of this year. Russia is the second-biggest investor in the Austrian economy, and our combined accumulated investment is over $30 billion," Matviyenko said.