In a hugely symbolic denouement to the rally, dozens of masked protesters, some brandishing flags of ultra-nationalist Svoboda (Freedom) party, tore down the 3.4 metre (11 feet) high statue of the Bolshevik leader after putting a rope noose round Lenin's neck.They say they want a revolution, but will Putin listen?
"Hang the Commie!" screamed the protesters.
They then hacked away with axes at the remnants of the monument lying flat on the ground. Parts of the statue including one of its hands were afterwards triumphantly brandished at the main demonstration on Independence Square.
"What an unpleasant suicide!" later quipped Svoboda leader Oleg Tyagnybok.
The protesters installed the Ukrainian state flag and the red and black banner of the wartime anti-Communist Ukrainian Insurgent Army on the empty plinth to the cries of "Thank God" and "Finally" from some 1,500 people at the scene.
Sunday, December 08, 2013
Happy Holidays, Comrade
In Kiev, it's either 2004 or 1991 all over again: