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Stalin Statue Destroyed In 'Terror' Act in Ukraine

The Stalin monument before the attack

The Stalin monument before the attack

Members of the Communist Party in Ukraine say assailants have blown up a controversial monument to Soviet dictator Josef Stalin, calling the move an "act of terror."

The bust, located outside the party's headquarters in the southeastern city of Zaporizhzhya, was destroyed late on New Year's Eve when an explosive charge was detonated.

The party building sustained serious damage, but no casualties were reported.

The same statue had been damaged last week in an explosion claimed by a Ukrainian nationalist group, Tryzub (Trident), which denounced Stalin as "the executioner of the Ukrainian people and an international terrorist."

Stalin is a deeply divisive figure in Ukraine, which is sharply split between its nationalist west and pro-Russian supporters in the east who take a fonder view of the Soviet past.

compiled from agency reports