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Symon Vasylyovych Petliura (Ukrainian: Си́мон Васи́льович Петлю́ра; Russian: Симон Васильевич Петлюра; 22 May [O.S. 10 May] 1879 – 25 May 1926) was a Ukrainian politician and journalist. He was the Supreme Commander of the Ukrainian People's Army (UNA) and led the Ukrainian People's Republic during the Ukrainian War of Independence, a part of the wider Russian Civil War.
|2nd Chairman of the Directorate|
11 February 1919 – 25 May 1926
(In exile from 18 March 1921)
|Preceded by||Volodymyr Vynnychenko|
|Succeeded by||Andriy Livytskyi1|
|Secretary of Military Affairs|
28 June 1917 – 6 January 1918
|Prime Minister||Volodymyr Vynnychenko|
|Preceded by||Position established|
|Succeeded by||Mykola Porsh|
|Born||(1879-05-22)22 May 1879|
Poltava, Poltava Governorate, Russian Empire (now Ukraine)
|Died||25 May 1926(1926-05-25) (aged 47)|
|Political party||RUP (1900–1905)|
|Alma mater||Poltava Orthodox Seminary|
|Occupation||Politician and statesman|
|Allegiance||Ukrainian People's Republic|
|Branch/service||Ukrainian People's Army|
|Years of service||1914–1922|
|Commands||Haidamaka Kish of Sloboda Ukraine|
|1As President of Ukraine in exile|
Petliura was born to a family of Cossack heritage in Poltava. From an early age he embraced socialism and Ukrainian nationalism, which he advocated through his highly prolific career as a journalist. After the 1917 February Revolution overthrew the Tsarist monarchy, the Ukrainian People's Republic was proclaimed and Petliura was elected head of its military. The Republic was briefly interrupted by the pro-German Ukrainian State, but in late 1918 Petliura, along with other members of the socialist Directorate of Ukraine, organised a revolt and overthrew the regime, restoring the Republic. He became the leader of the Directorate in early 1919, after the Bolsheviks invaded Ukraine and drove the UNA to Galicia. Facing imminent defeat, Petliura entered an alliance with Józef Piłsudski's Poland. The Polish–Soviet War concluded with Polish victory but Ukraine remained under Soviet control, forcing Petliura into exile. He initially directed the government-in-exile from Poland, but eventually settled in Paris.
During the Civil War, the UNA were responsible for the deaths of tens of thousands of Jewish civilians, and Petliura's role in the pogroms has been a topic of dispute. In 1926, Petliura was assassinated in Paris by Jewish anarchist Sholem Schwarzbard, who had lost relatives in the pogroms.
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