Eight heads of state are expected to attend an international forum on Soviet-time famine in Ukraine, which will be held in the country`s capital on November 22, a Foreign Ministry spokesman said on Monday, RIA Novosti reported.

Ukraine has been seeking international recognition for the 1932-33 famine, known as the Holodomor, as an act of genocide by the Soviet authorities.

Vasily Kirilich, the Ukrainian ministry`s press secretary, said the presidents of the Baltic States, Poland and Georgia have officially announced they will be attending, and confirmations were still to be received from two European countries.

Kirilich said Holodomor commemoration events would take place November 17 through 22.

Estimates vary widely as to the number of deaths in Ukraine caused by the forced collectivization of the early 1930s, along with the devastating purges of Ukrainian intelligentsia, religious leaders and politicians under Stalin. Some sources cite figures of over 7 million.

In late 2006, Ukraine`s parliament recognized the Holodomor as an act of genocide by the Soviet authorities, but Russia has consistently rejected Ukraine`s interpretation of events.


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