Hundreds of people have gathered in Montenegro as authorities unveil a monument to Josip Broz Tito — a rare honor for the late Yugoslav communist dictator who was widely denounced after the 1990s’ breakup of Yugoslavia.

The ceremony Wednesday in Montenegro’s capital of Podgorica marked the anniversary of the city’s liberation at the end of World War II from the Nazi German occupiers by Tito’s anti-fascists.

The crowd waved Montenegrin and old Yugoslav flags and sang songs about Tito’s partisan movement, reflecting nostalgic sentiments many in the former Yugoslavia still feel nearly three decades after the country dissolved in bloodshed.

While Tito imposed a communist dictatorship, Yugoslavs also enjoyed free travel and relative openness compared to other Communist countries at the time in Eastern Europe.

Podgorica was once known as Titograd (Tito’s city).

People pull a curtain to unveil a monument to late Yugoslav communist leader Josip Broz Tito in Montenegro's capital Podgorica, Wednesday, Dec. (AP Photo/Risto Bozovic)
People pull a curtain to unveil a monument to late Yugoslav communist leader Josip Broz Tito in Montenegro’s capital Podgorica, Wednesday, Dec. (AP Photo/Risto Bozovic)

Source: The Associated Press