: August 21 marks 48th anniversary of Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia

17:02 Aug. 21, 2016

August 21 marks 48th anniversary of Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia

Protesters march in Wenceslas Square following the Soviet invasion and takeover of Czechoslovakia in Prague, Aug. 29, 1968. Soviet tank advances on the street. (AP Photo)

Over hundred civilians killed in a brutal military operation

Early in the night of August 21, 1968, the Soviet Union, together with three Warsaw Pact countries - Bulgaria, Hungary, and Poland, invaded Czechoslovakia because of the country's experiments with a more liberal government. Two other pact countries, Romania and Albania, refused to participate.

Approximately 250,000 troops attacked Czechoslovakia, leaving 108 Czech and Slovak civilians killed and around 500 wounded.

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The Soviet invasion succeeded in bringing down the uprising known as the Prague Spring and strengthened the authoritarian control over the country.

70,000 Czechoslovak citizens fled to the West immediately after the invasion. Total number of emigrants before the Velvet revolution reached 300,000.

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