(QHA) -

A monument to Soviet dictator Josef Stalin was unveiled in western Ukraine as anti-government demonstrations in the former Soviet nation continue, local media reported.

The installation of the monument in an unspecified location in the Volhynia region was attended by local members of Ukraine’s Communist Party, representatives of the Russian and Belarusian communities, the Comments.ua news portal informs, RIA novosti reports.

Commenting on the event, the Communist Party officials said Stalin was the leader who united modern Ukraine and liberated the world from fascist forces.

The head of the Anti-Fascist Committee of Volhynia called on the communists “to rise in defense of the homeland from fascism” as Ukraine is facing a “neo-Nazi uprising.”

Meanwhile, a number of statues of Russian revolutionary leader Vladimir Lenin across the country have been pulled down since early December amid ongoing protests against the government’s decision to halt a landmark political and free-trade deal with the European Union and, instead, opt for stronger ties with Russia.

QHA