Fact of the day: 19th June

On this day in 1991 The Soviet occupation of Hungary ended.

In the wake of the Revolutions of 1989, the Soviet troops – the Southern Group of Forces – started leaving Hungary.

By July 1990, some 15,000 Soviet soldiers and their dependents had left, taking about 60,000 of the 560,000 tons of equipment they had stored there.

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There were 5,750 buildings left on the 60 army camps and 10 air bases maintained by the Soviet Army in Hungary.

The Soviets reportedly asked for 50 billion forints (some 800 million US dollars at the time), as compensation for the “Soviet investment” in Hungary; the then-commander of Soviet troops in Hungary, Col. Gen. Matvei Burlakov (succeeded by Lt. Gen. Shilov), said that the troop withdrawals may be held up if the Hungarians refused to pay.

The remaining 40,000 Soviet troops left Hungary, starting in March 1990, with the last leaving on June 19, 1991.

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