Ukrainians in the United Kingdom
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Organisation of Ukrainian Nationalists (Melnykivtsi), OUN(M) [Організація Українських Націоналістів (мельниківців)] – a political organisation whose goal was the establishment of an independent Ukrainian state; one of the two organisations, led by Andrii Melnyk and Stepan Bandera, into which the pre-war OUN split in 1940-1941.

After the split the organisation continued to use the name OUN, but became known as the OUN(M) to distinguish it from the OUN (Banderivtsi), or OUN(B). After the Second World War the OUN(M) also used the name OUN Solidarists (OUNs). The organisation’s leadership continued to use the pre-war name Provid Ukrainskykh Natsionalistiv (PUN).

At the end of the Second World War the OUN(M) had members in many countries around the world, particularly in Europe and North America, although there were few, if any, in the UK. Between 1946 and 1949 Dmytro Andrievsky, a leading member of the organisation, intermittently lived in London. Significant numbers of members began to arrive in the UK in 1947 as European Volunteer Workers and former soldiers of the Galicia Division. With the arrival of these members from continental European a UK branch of the OUN(M) began to be organised.

In addition to those who already belonged to the organisation on arrival in the UK, new members were recruited from among other post-war immigrants. Local sub-branches of the organisation were formed in towns and cities around the country. In later years some descendants of the post-war immigrants also joined the organisation. As was the case with the post-war OUN(M) overall, the UK branch continued to operate as a closed organisation in the manner of the pre-war OUN.

The OUN(M) initiated the founding of, or gained a major influence in, a number of community organisations in the UK, such as the Federation of Ukrainians in Great Britain, the Olena Teliha Women’s Society, the Association of Ukrainian War Veterans, and the League of Ukrainian Resistance Fighters. The London Office of the Ukrainian National Council Executive Committee at various times included members of the OUN(M).

After the establishment of independent Ukraine in 1991 the OUN(M) focused its activities on the consolidation of Ukrainian statehood, and formed various organisations in Ukraine to pursue this aim. Outside Ukraine its activities diminished in scale but did not cease completely, and the UK branch continued to exist for a time.

Former leaders of the OUN(M) UK branch include Eugene Maciach, Mykola Dowbusz, Andrij Kostiuk, Oleksa Boruczyk, Ostap Czujko.

Roman Krawec

Bibliography

Yurkevich, M. ‘Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists’, in Encyclopedia of Ukraine, volume III (L-Pf), ed. by D. Husar Struk (Toronto, 1993), pp. 708-710

Kasianov, H. V., Do pytannia pro ideolohiiu Orhanizatsii Ukrainskykh Natsionalistiv (OUN): analitychnyi ohliad (Kyiv, 2003)

Patryliak, I.K., ‘Orhanizatsiia ukrainskykh natsionalistiv’, in Entsyklopediia istorii Ukrainy, vol. 7, Ml-O (Kyiv, 2010), pp. 610-618

Andrii Melnyk: spohady, dokumenty, lystuvannia, ed. by O. Kucheruk and Yu. Chernenko (Kyiv, 2011)