Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Ukraine to mark 80th anniversary of Petlyura's death

KYIV. May 15 (Interfax) - Ceremonies commemorating the 80th anniversary of the death of Symon Petlyura are to be held in Ukraine at the end of May, Ukrainian Culture and Tourism Minister Ihor Likhovyy told reporters in Kyiv on Monday. "Regrettably, Petlyura's personality is yet to find its properplace, which would match his contribution to the building of a Ukrainian nation and statehood. A political decision has been made atthe highest level in an attempt to reverse the widespread custom ofscaring little children with Symon Petlyura," the minister said "We mustbreak this stereotype," he added. An organizing committee, to be headed by Likhovyy, has been set upand an action plan has been worked out in cooperation with the Academyof Sciences to immortalize the memory of outstanding Ukrainian figures, Deputy Culture and Tourism Minister Olha Shokalo-Bench said. The anniversary ceremonies will include a film about Petlyura, a photo exhibition called "The Knight of the Ukrainian Revolution" at the National History Museum, a roundtable on the theme "Symon Petlyura - APublic, Political and Military Figure of Ukraine" and a memorial plaqueat a site where a monument to Petlyura is to be unveiled on December 1,2006. A number of books devoted to his life and work will also bereleased. The city of Poltava will host a series of events dedicated toPetlyura. Petlyura, a Ukrainian Central Rada deputy, chief military commanderof the Ukrainian People's Republic in 1917-1918 and head of theUkrainian People's Republic Directorate in 1919-1920, led the Ukrainian government in exile after emigrating in November 1920. In 1923 he moved to Austria, and then to Hungary and Switzerland. In 1924, he settled in Paris where he was assassinated two years later by a Ukrainian-born Jewish anarchist Sholom Schwartzbard. Petlyura is buried at the Montparnasse cemetery in Paris.


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