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Communists In Eastern Ukraine Want Stalin Monument

DNIPROPETROVSK, Ukraine -- Communists in the eastern Ukrainian city of Dnipropetrovsk want to erect a monument to Soviet leader Josef Stalin, RFE/RL's Ukrainian Service reports.

Kateryna Vidyakina, a Communist deputy on the Dnipropetrovsk regional council, told journalists today that placing a monument to Stalin in the city would be a sign of the Communist Party's political strength and popularity.

Mykola Vodyany, the secretary of the Communist Party's Dnipropetrovsk committee, said the monument to Stalin could be erected on one of the city's major streets.

But he said discussions with local authorities must be held and the opinion of locals taken into account.

But he said the monument could be erected on property belonging to the Communist Party, in which no one's permission would be necessary.

Communists in the Black Sea city of Odesa announced a plan last week to erect a Stalin monument by November 7, the Soviet-era holiday marking the day the Bolsheviks came to power in Russia.

And in March, Communists in the southeastern Ukrainian city of Zaporizhzhya announced plans to unveil a Stalin monument by May 9, the 65th anniversary of the Soviet victory over Nazi Germany in World War II.

Stalin ruled the Soviet Union from the early 1920s until his death in 1953. He is considered responsible for the deaths of millions of people during his reign.