World

Warsaw city councilors ban 1945 Soviet army monument from returning to a Warsaw city street

FILE - In this Aug. 13, 2008 file photo people walk past a 1945 monument of Polish-Soviet World War II brotherhood in arms, with Georgian national flags placed on it as a protest against Russia's involvement in Georgia, in Warsaw, Poland. Warsaw city councilors have banned the monument from being returned to its place in a city square, after it was temporarily removed from that square in 2011 to allow for the construction of a subway line in the area. (AP Photo/Alik Keplicz, File)

FILE - In this Aug. 13, 2008 file photo people walk past a 1945 monument of Polish-Soviet World War II brotherhood in arms, with Georgian national flags placed on it as a protest against Russia's involvement in Georgia, in Warsaw, Poland. Warsaw city councilors have banned the monument from being returned to its place in a city square, after it was temporarily removed from that square in 2011 to allow for the construction of a subway line in the area. (AP Photo/Alik Keplicz, File)  (The Associated Press)

Warsaw city councilors have banned a 1945 monument of Polish-Soviet brotherhood in arms from being returned to its place on a city street.

The move, a reversal of their own previous decision, comes as ties between Warsaw and Moscow are strained over the conflict in eastern Ukraine.

The councilors voted 51-2 late Thursday to keep the massive monument, generally referred to as the "four sleeping men," in a storeroom. It was temporarily taken there in 2011 to allow for the construction of a subway line in the area.

The monument was put up in 1945 in Warsaw's Praga district to commemorate the joint struggle of Soviet and Polish troops against the Nazis. But after the 1989 fall of communism, the monument became an unpopular symbol of that hated political system.