Jan. 1 - Thousands of Ukrainians march to mark the anniversary of the birthday of controversial nationalist hero Stepan Bandera. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) Thousands of Ukrainians marched through the streets of central Kiev by torchlight on Wednesday (January 1) night to celebrate the 105th anniversary of Ukrainian nationalist hero Stepan Bandera's birth. Chanting "Bandera is our hero!" and "Glory to Ukraine!", about 15,000 people walked waving the red and black flags of Ukraine's nationalist movement and the blue and yellow flags of the far-right Svoboda, or "freedom", party. Bandera, who led the Organisation of Ukrainian Nationalists in the first part of the 20th century, is revered by Ukrainian nationalists for fighting Russian and Polish occupation in Ukraine but denounced by others as a Nazi collaborator during World War II. The march took place as Ukraine sees the biggest anti-government protests since the Orange Revolution nine years ago. Hundreds of thousands of people have rallied in Ukraine's public squares since late November following Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich's refusal to sign an association agreement with the European Union, instead favoring stronger relations with the country's ex-Soviet master, Russia.