Kharkov, Ukraine, May 19, 2022
Updated 5/19, 5:15 PM
The dismantling of monuments connected with Russia and the USSR continues in Ukraine.
A monument to St. Alexander Nevsky was pulled down in the Saltova District of Kharkov today. A video published by the Ukrainian outlet Strana shows the monument being pulled down by a rope tied around the saint’s neck and connected to a truck.
Archpriest Peter Kozachkov, rector of the nearby St. Alexander Nevsky church, told the Union of Orthodox Journalists how they managed to pull the statue down: “From the very early morning, 30 minutes after the curfew, men armed with machine guns arrived by car, put soldiers so no one could get near, and very quickly, in just a few minutes, pulled the monument down. No one had any time to do anything to protect the monument.”
The monument was erected at the priest’s initiative in honor of the city’s 350th anniversary in 2004.
According to parishioners, the park used to be a dirty place, but once the monument was erected, the square was transformed and became a popular place for locals.
St. Alexander was Prince of Novgorod (1236–40, 1241–56 and 1258–1259), Grand Prince of Kiev (1236–52), and Grand Prince of Vladimir (1252–63). He is known for a number of military victories that played a significant role in Rus’ history. He ended his days as a monk with the name Alexei.
Updated with information from the local priest and parishioners