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A statue of Vladimir Lenin near the Finlyandsky railway station
A statue of Vladimir Lenin near the Finlyandsky railway station in St. Petersburg was badly damaged in an explosion on Wednesday, a local police spokesman said.

"Unknown people detonated an unidentified explosive device by the monument at about 04:30 a.m. (00:30 GMT)," the spokesman said, adding that the blast had caused a large crater by the statue.

No one was hurt in the explosion.

The bronze monument to Lenin was erected at the site, where the Russian communist leader made a prominent speech after returning from exile in 1917 just prior to the Russian Revolution. The statue was later moved closer to the Neva River.

Although there were once a geat number of Lenin monuments in St. Petersburg, the 10-meter high bronze statue is one of the few to have survived the collapse of the U.S.S.R. Residents of Russia's second-largest city protected it from artillery fire during WWII.


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