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10 Apr, 2009 11:47

Ukraine dismantles ‘Soviet militarism’ relic

Ukraine dismantles ‘Soviet militarism’ relic

Ukraine’s Lvov regional parliament has ruled to dismantle a Soviet liberator monument. The WW2 era memorial will now be pulled out and taken to Lvov’s museum of totalitarianism.

All 72 members of parliament supported the initiative.

”Our commission believes such kind of monuments are homotypic around Ukraine. They don’t have any historic value and there is no place for them in modern, sovereign Ukraine,”
explained deputy Marina Fedoriv.

The move was masterminded by the radical right wing party, Liberty. In their statement, they dubbed the monument “a symbol of the Soviet militarism” and stressed that it “distorts the history."

Earlier, 2,000 local residents put their names down for removing the monument, Ukraine’s TV channel 24 reports. As architect Igor Pololyak explains, a Soviet soldier is associated with bad memories among local residents.

The first tentative move to put an end to “the Soviet militarism“ was made in 2007, when a special committee was formed in this western Ukrainian region.

And as Ukraine’s WW2 veterans are preparing to celebrate the 63th anniversary of the victory over the Nazis, the commission is gathering pace – the fate of another nine Soviet-time monuments will be decided soon.

It is not the first example of fighting against Soviet relics in the post-Soviet era. In 2007, a Bronze soldier monument was removed from the centre of Tallinn, Estonia. The removal was followed with massive protests.

Their neighbors in Lithuania went even further – they passed a law banning all symbols of the Soviet Union as well as of Nazi Germany.