10:27 GMT +320 September 2019
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    Veterans of the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (OUN-UPA) at the monument to Stepan Bandera during the Heroes Festival in Lviv.

    Ukraine to Apologize to Poland for WWII Volhynia Massacre if Proven Guilty

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    Kiev will apologize to Warsaw for the massacres of Poles in Volhynia peaked in 1943 if historians prove that then leader of the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA) Roman Shukhevych was responsible for the tragedy, Ukrainian Vice-Prime Minister for European integration Ivanna Klympush-Tsintsadze said Wednesday.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Polish people maintain that Shukhevych is responsible for the Volhynia mass killing by the UPA. In Ukraine, Shukhevych was recognized as a hero in 2007.

    "He is a Ukrainian hero and received such an award. This is a man who did a lot for building the state of Ukraine. I reiterate: historians should find out whether he did something bad for other nations. If so, we will have to bow down to our immediate neighbors and apologize for the horrible acts if they were indeed committed," Klympush-Tsintsadze said when answering the question if she personally considers Shukhevych a hero.

    The UPA was established in October 1942 and was mainly operating in the eastern Ukraine against the Soviet Union.

    The Volhynia massacre was part of an ethnic cleansing operation carried out in Nazi-occupied Poland by UPA in 1943-1944. According to various estimates, up to 100,000 people were killed in the conflict.

    In 2015, Ukrainian lawmakers passed a bill recognizing notorious ultranationalist groups, including UPA, as fighters for the country's independence in the 20th century and granted them social benefits under the new law.

    Related:

    Polish Border With Ukraine to Feature Remember Volhynia Massacre Billboard
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    mass killings, Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA), Poland, Ukraine
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