Russian architects forced to abandon contest to renovate Lenin’s mausoleum

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Russian architects have been forced to abandon a contest to renovate Vladimir Lenin’s mausoleum in Moscow’s Red Square following widespread backlash. 

The Russian Union of Architects was met with fury after they launched the competition for ideas to redevelop the founder of the Soviet Union’s final resting place once his body is removed.

The initiative was cancelled less than 24 hours after being launched. 

Russian architects have been forced to abandon a contest to renovate Vladimir Lenin's mausoleum in Moscow's Red Square following widespread backlash. Lenin's Mausoleum pictured above

Russian architects have been forced to abandon a contest to renovate Vladimir Lenin’s mausoleum in Moscow’s Red Square following widespread backlash. Lenin’s Mausoleum pictured above 

Gennady Zyuganov, the leader of the Russian Communist Party, slammed the competition as a ‘dirty provocation’ and likened it to ‘spitting on the grave’ of the communist leader.

Union president Nikolai Shumakov confirmed to Russian news agency Moskva that the competition was off and insisted that the intention had not been to make a political point. 

He said that the body would not be removed ‘in our lifetime, so we decided to wait’.   

‘We do not propose to remove Lenin. We do not propose to demolish the mausoleum. We propose to find a solution for the further use of the greatest work of Soviet architecture,’ he said, as quoted by Russian news outlet RT

The Bolshevik leader’s remains were embalmed on Stalin’s orders when he died aged 53 in 1924 and kept on display in Moscow apart from a period in the Second World War.

Gennady Zyuganov, the leader of the Russian Communist Party, slammed the competition as a 'dirty provocation' and likened it to 'spitting on the grave' of the communist leader

Gennady Zyuganov, the leader of the Russian Communist Party, slammed the competition as a ‘dirty provocation’ and likened it to ‘spitting on the grave’ of the communist leader

In 2012, Russia was edging towards a historic decision to bury the embalmed corpse of the founder of the Soviet Union.

The former culture minister Vladimir Medinsky said it was ‘absurd’ that Lenin had not been laid to rest 88 years after his death.

Putin has repeatedly postponed a decision on burial, arguing that Lenin remained an icon for many elderly Russians.

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