Wednesday, August 20, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Viktor Sukhodrev | Soviet interpreter, 81

Viktor Sukhodrev, 81, the Soviet interpreter who for three decades brought the words of Kremlin leaders to the English-speaking world died Friday in Moscow. No cause of death was immediately announced, said Ekho Moskvy radio.

Mr. Sukhodrev was a fixture at U.S.-Soviet summits beginning with Nikita Khrushchev's 1959 visit to the U.S., the first by a Soviet leader.

Three years earlier, at the very beginning of his career, he had translated Khrushchev's now-famous phrase "We will bury you."

He also was called into service for Mikhail Gorbachev, the last Soviet leader, when he and President Ronald Reagan met in Washington in 1987 to sign the treaty that eliminated certain intermediate-range nuclear weapons.

Born Dec. 12, 1932, Mr. Sukhodrev spent six years in London as a young boy during World War II with his mother, who worked at the Soviet trade mission. His father, a military intelligence officer who had worked undercover in the U.S., stopped Mr. Sukhodrev from following him into an espionage career, Ekho Moskvy said. Instead, he was assigned to the Foreign Ministry and became Khrushchev's personal interpreter. - AP
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