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LAST week’s unveiling of a monument to nazi collaborator and war criminal Zenovy Tershavetsky, who participated in the murder of 8,000 Jews in Poltava in 1941, is “not an isolated case” but a result of government policy, the Communist Party of Ukraine (KPU) said at the weekend.
KPU general secretary Petro Symonenko told the Morning Star he was not surprised that the town of Sambir had erected the bust of Tershavetsky on its Avenue of Glory as the speaker of Ukraine’s parliament, Andriy Parubiy, is the “undisguised nazi” who founded the Social Nationalist Party.
Tershavetsky was a member of Stepan Bandera’s Organisation of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN) which fought alongside the nazi invaders in the second world war. Mr Symonenko pointed out that — despite its role in the Holocaust — it was now illegal to deny the “heroism” of the OUN.
He said: “In Ivano-Frankivsk, a monument to OUN leader Roman Shukhevych is erected. In Kiev, General Vatutin Avenue [named for the Red Army general who liberated the city from nazi occupation] has been renamed Commander Roman Shukhevych Avenue.”
Shukhevych was a deputy commander of the nazi Nachtigall battalion. As a commander in the OUN’s military wing, the Ukrainian Insurgent Army, he helped organise the Halych-Volhynia massacres of 1943 in which around 100,000 Poles were murdered.
Another key player in the Volhynian massacres Mykola Arsenych, who also organised pogroms of Jews in the immediate aftermath of the nazi invasion of June 1941, has had streets named after him in Kolomyia and Novgorod-Volynsky, a monument erected to him at his home in Nizhny Berezov and a bas-relief sculpted in his honour at the school he attended, Mr Symonenko said.
“And in Lviv, Ternopil, in regions everywhere they erect monuments and name streets for Ukraine’s SS division ‘Galicia,’ which participated in the genocide of the Jewish and Polish populations. In April last year postage stamps were issued with SS Galicia soldiers bearing Hitler’s uniforms and insignia.
“So let me stress it again — honouring nazi criminals, collaborators and murderers is not random in Ukraine. This is the result of state policy since the armed February 2014 coup and the seizure of power by oligarchs, nazis and criminals.”
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