National Memory Institute will work to redeem Stepan Bandera's honor

KYIV, December 19 /UKRINFORM/. Academician Ihor Yukhnovskyi, director of the National Memory Institute, has tasked his colleagues to return good name to Stepan Bandera, one of the national liberation movement leaders.

The attitude to this person is contradictory. To some people he is a symbol of inflexibility of the Ukrainian spirit, others say he is a bandit and terrorist. That is why it is necessary to clear the name of Stepan Bandera from Soviet-epoch mythological layers, as was pointed out during a round-table meeting at the Institute, where scientists were discussing the role and place of Bandera in the Ukrainian national liberation movement of the 20s - 50s past century.

Academician Ihor Yukhnovskyi noted that Bandera was considered to be dangerous by three occupational regimes: Polish authorities in 1936 sentenced him to death, the Nazi regime in 1941 placed him in a concentration camp for declaring the Act of Ukraine's Independence in Lviv, and Soviet power organized his murder abroad in 1959.

Historian Volodymyr Viatrovych, who studied Bandera's life, noted that "the logical move towards recognition of Stepan Bandera as a fighter for national independence will be granting the Hero of Ukraine title to him". The scientist does not deny that in this connection, both in Ukraine and abroad, certain political circles will make a noise. Yet, in his opinion, Bandera stands in one line with such a leader of liberation movement as Roman Shukhevych, recently granted this honorary title, which also provoked scandals among politicians.

Historian Vasyl Derevynskyi, having drawn parallels between Bandera, Poland's Jozef Pilsudski, Israel's Menachem Begin and Ireland's Michael Collins, whose names are inseparably linked with the ideas of their countries' sovereignty, stressed that there is every ground to believe Bandera's political activity to be "a foundation stone in the building of Ukraine's state sovereignty".


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