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Beria, Lavrenti Pavlovich

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Born: 1899 AD
Died: 1953 AD, at 54 years of age.

Nationality: Georgian
Categories: Politician, Spies

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1899 - Born on the 29th of March in Merkheuli, in the Abkhazian region of Georgia. Soviet secret police chief.

         - Educated at a technical school in Sukhumi.

1917 - Joined the Bolshevik Party and studied engineering in Baku.

         - Beria joined the Cheka All-Russian Extraordinary Commission to Combat Counter-Revolution and Sabotage.

1921 - He served as a member of the OGPU (the forerunner of the KGB) in the Caucasus, before becoming first secretary of the Georgian Communist Party.

1922 - Beria was deputy head of the Vecheka's successor in Georgia.

1924 - He led the repression of nationalist disturbances in Georgia.

         - Appointed head of the "secret-political division" of the Transcaucasian OGPU.

         - Awarded the Order of the Red Banner.

1926 - Became head of the Georgian OGPU (Combined State Political Directorate).

1931 - He was appointed Party Secretary in Georgia.

1934 - Member of the Central Committee of the Communist Party.

1935 - Beria was one of Stalin's most trusted subordinates.

1938 - Stalin brought Beria to Moscow as Chairman of the People's Commissariat for Internal Affairs (NKVD).

         - He was appointed minister for internal affairs by his patron, Stalin, and served as vice-president of the State Committee for Defense during World War II.

1939 - Became a candidate member of the Communist Party's Politburo.

1941 - Commissar General of State Security.

         - In February, he became a Deputy Chairman of the Council of People's Commissars (Sovnarkom).

1944 - He was in-charge of dealing with the various ethnic minorities accused of collaboration.

1945 - Accorded the title Marshal of the Soviet Union.

1946 - Beria left the post as the head of the NKVD.

1948 - Moved to consolidate their power with a purge of Zhdanov's associates known as the "Leningrad Affair".

1953 - Appointed First Deputy Prime Minister and reappointed head of the MVD, which he merged with the MGB.

         - On Stalin's death in March, he attempted to seize power, but was foiled by fearful military and party leaders.

         - Pravda announced Beria's arrest on 10th of July crediting it to Malenkov and referring to Beria's "criminal activities against the Party and the State".

         - Beria was executed on 23rd of December and his burial location remains a mystery.

         - He was a plotter of ruthless ambition, and a notoriously skilled organizer of forced labour, terror, and espionage.


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Page last updated: 12:59am, 04th Aug '07