Ohrana ( with meaning: "Protection"); were armed collaborationist detachments organized by the former Internal Macedonian Revolutionary Organization (IMRO) structures, composed of Bulgarians (i.e. pro- Bulgarian oriented parts of the Slavophone population) in Nazi-occupied Greek Macedonia during World War II and led by officers of the Bulgarian Army. Bulgaria was interested in acquiring Thessalonica and Western Macedonia, under Italian and German occupation and hoped to sway the allegiance of the 80,000 Slavs who lived there at the time. The appearance of Greek partisans in those areas persuaded the Axis to allow the formation of these collaborationst detachments. However, during late 1944, when the Axis appeared to be losing the war, many Slavophone Nazi collaborators, Ohrana members and VMRO regiment volunteers fled to the opposite camp by joining the newly founded communist SNOF. The organization managed to recruit initially 1,000 up to 3,000 armed men from the Slavophone community that lived in the western part of Greek Macedonia.