Russian Communists plan WWII memorial ceremony in Lvov

The Russian Communist Party said on Sunday it may hold a wreath laying ceremony to mark the anniversary of the beginning of 1941-1945 Great Patriotic War in the west Ukrainian city of Lvov, where veterans were attacked by nationalists during recent Victory Day celebrations.

The ceremony, planned for June 22, is to be held in cooperation with the Ukrainian Communist Party.

“We are currently holding talks about this event with parties around the world,” a party spokesman said. “We plan for a compact but high-ranking delegation to come to Lvov.”

Ukrainian nationalists caused outrage during annual celebrations of the Soviet victory in 1941-1945 Great Patriotic War on May 9 when they attacked veterans, tore and burnt Soviet flags and stamped on a wreath for war victims.

Victory Day is still a major event on the Russian calendar, largely because of the scale of the loss suffered by the Soviet Union, where some 23 million people were killed.

Many in Ukraine and other parts of the former Soviet Union, however, consider the losses incurred on their countries by Soviet leader Josef Stalin’s purge equally as painful.

On Sunday the Ukrainian nationalist organisation, Svoboda (Freedom), told RIA Novosti that two of its senior members had been arrested in connection with last week’s disruptions.

The Ukrainian Communist Party said at news conference on Sunday that it will do anything it can to defend history.

“The events of May 9 revealed that growing fascism in our society has moved from talk to action,” Ukrainian Communist Party leader Petr Simonenko said. “I think it is important not just to speak with sympathy about what happened, but to fight against this evil.”

MOSCOW/DONETSK, May 15 (RIA Novosti)

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