These people were agents of the secret police forces of the Soviet Union, in one or more of their various forms.

A chekist (Russian: чекист) in a narrow meaning is an agent of the Cheka (ChK), the first of the Soviet Union's state security agencies. In a broader meaning, "chekist" can denote an agent of Cheka and its descendants: NKVD, MGB, KGB, as well as post-Soviet agencies of Russia, including the FSB. As the Soviet and Russian state-security organs changed in title, additional synonyms for chekist emerged, such as gebist (Russian: гэбист) or gebeshnik (Russian: гэбэшник), both meaning "state security guy", or kagebist (Russian: кагебист) and kagebeshnik (Russian: кагебешник), both meaning "KGB-guy".

Most of these chekists were agents of the NKVD, but there are members of the MGB and the KGB as well.

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