ALUSHTA, Ukraine -- Unknown individuals have seriously damaged a monument commemorating victims of the deportation of the Crimean Tatars in Ukraine's Crimea region.
A leader of the local Crimea Tatar community in the city of Alushta, Enver Arpatly, told RFE/RL on January 17 that local citizens had discovered the monument was damaged on January 16.
The Alushta city police have launched investigations into the act of vandalism.
Arpatly has announced a financial reward for any leads revealing the identities of the vandals.
More than a dozen memorials, cemeteries, and cultural centers related to Crimean Tatars have been vandalized in Crimea in the last several years.
Some 180,000 Crimean Tatars were deported by Soviet dictator Josef Stalin from Crimea to Central Asia in 1944.
Most of them returned to Crimea in the late 1980s and '90s.