Soviet dictator Josef Stalin, who sent millions to their deaths in the Great Purge of the 1930s, has been voted Russia’s third-greatest historical figure, says a state television network.
The 90-day nationwide project has been run by the Rossiya channel. Mr Stalin’s inclusion has been blasted by rights activists who say that authorities are trying to gloss over Mr Stalin’s atrocities and glorify his tyranny.
With over a half-million Internet and SMS votes, medieval leader Alexander Nevsky was voted the greatest Russian. During his 13th Century reign, Alexander Nevsky, subsequently canonized, amassed numerous military victories over European invaders.
Pyotr Stolypin, a prime minister under turn-of-the-century czar Nicholas II, who suppressed leftist revolutionaries, won the second place.