Ivan Mazepa is one of the more controversial people in Ukrainian history, having been shunned by the Russians and quite recently he has been fêted by the Ukrainians. The Russians don’t like him because he changed sides before the Battle of Poltava, supporting the Swedes instead of the Russians. The Russian Orthodox Church excommunicated him in 1708, and they still haven’t relented. That’s a proper grudge.
Anyway, Mazepa is now becoming a bit of a national hero and he’s appeared on the back of a 10-hryvnia banknote, which is something to write home about. Or it would be if Mazepa hadn’t died in 1709.
However, even this statue has been a bit of a problem for the authorities, as it was halted before being given the go-ahead. It was unveiled on 6 May 2016 by Petro Poroshenko, the current President of Ukraine.