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Nationalists Mark 75th Anniversary Of Ukrainian Insurgent Army

Marchers in Kyiv on October 14 marking the 75th anniversary of the founding of the UPA.

Thousands of Ukrainian nationalists have marched through the capital, Kyiv, to mark the 75th anniversary of the creation of the controversial Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA).

March organizers said as many as 20,000 people participated in the October 14 march, which was supported by the right-wing Freedom, Right Sector, and National Corp political parties.

Some 5,000 police were on hand to keep order. Journalists reported seeing some marchers giving Nazi salutes.

Since 2015, the October 14 anniversary has been marked as the Defender of Ukraine Day public holiday.

The UPA was founded in western Ukraine during the Nazi occupation of the country in World War II and fought against both the Nazis and the Soviet Red Army. Tens of thousands of ethnic Poles were killed in what some historians say was ethnic cleansing by the UPA.

When the war ended, many UPA fighters continued to fight a guerrilla campaign against the Soviet authorities into the early 1950s.