Soviet forced labour camps
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'I was imprisoned in Stalin's Gulag'

During the Stalin era and through to the 1980s the Soviet Union imprisoned millions of its citizens in forced labour camps. Conditions were harsh, with little or poor food, with gruelling physical work the norm.

Known as the Gulag, after the government agency that ran the network, the prison camps contained many political prisoners, alongside petty criminals and other convicts.

Leonid Finkelstein spent five and a half years in the Gulag for talking to a fellow student about the growing anti-Semitism in post war Russia. He told Witness about his darkest days in the camps.

Witness is a World Service programme of the stories of our times told by the people who were there.

  • 09 Sep 2015
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