KIEV, February 25 (RIA Novosti) – Ukraine’s parliament has removed the five-pointed red star from its spire in another measure aimed at erasing the nation’s Soviet legacy.
Oleh Tyahnibok, leader of the nationalist Svoboda party, announced the removal of the symbol Tuesday during an address to fellow lawmakers in the Verkhovna Rada, Ukraine’s parliament.
The past few weeks have seen the removal by mobs of several statues of Bolshevik leader Vladimir Lenin in what is widely seen as a reflection of a growing nationalist mood in the former Soviet nation, which officials in Moscow worry may represent an ill omen for the country’s substantial ethnic Russian minority.
The Foreign Ministry in Moscow said Tuesday that it will be closely scrutinizing a draft law in Ukraine that would see Russian dropped as an official language. Russian is currently recognized as an official language in regions where at least 10 percent of the population is Russian-speaking. Just under half of Ukrainian regions meet that standard.