- Finnish prisoners of war in the Soviet Union
There were two waves of the Finnish prisoners of war in the Soviet Union during the
World War II: POWof the Winter War(1939-1940) and prisoners of the Continuation War. [V. Galitsky (1997) "Finnish Prisoners of War in NKVD Camps (1939-1953)" ISBN 5-7873-0005-X ru icon]
The main camp for Finnish POW was established within the former monastery near
Gryazovetsin Vologda Oblast, Russia. NKVD planned for many POWs in the Winter War and planned nine camps to handle about 25,000 men, however during the whole Winter War there were about 900 Finnish POW, about 600 of which were placed in the Gryazivets camp. A total of 838 Finnish POWs were returned to Finland. The last party of Finns left Russia on April 20, 1940. [http://www.aroundspb.ru/finnish/konasov/konasov.php Finnish POW during the World War II] , Viktor Konasov, "North" magazine (“Север”) no. 11-12, 2002 ru icon]
During the Continuation War (1941-1944) Finland lost 3,401 men as prisoners of war.Timo Malmi and Teuvo Alava:"Jatkosodan sotavankitilasto", Tampere, 1994] From those, 2,476 were registered by
NKVD, of which 1,972 were handled by POW camps with the majority handled by Camp no. 158 in Cherepovets, Vologda Oblast, and its subcamps.
From all captured, 582 were captured during the Finnish offensive in 1941, 506 during 1942-1943 and 2,313 during the Soviet offensive of 1944. In addition 289 persons switched sides voluntarily, and 76 of those returned to Finland as spies during the war.
1,954 prisoners were returned after the war. Nearly all of them were returned home by the end of 1945, with the exception of convicted and several men who decided to stay in the Soviet Union.
In 1992 a memorial monument was established at the Cherepovets cemetery, where Finnish POWs were buried.
*Soviet prisoners of war in Finland (in Russian) [http://www.aroundspb.ru/finnish/pietola/pietola1.php]
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