Ukraine’s own ‘ISIS’, the Aidar battalion


This video is called Battalion Azov: neo-nazis in Ukraine.

From Newsweek in the USA:

Ukrainian Nationalist Volunteers Committing ‘ISIS-Style‘ War Crimes

By Damien Sharkov

9/11/14 at 4:23 PM

Groups of right-wing Ukrainian nationalists are committing war crimes in the rebel-held territories of Eastern Ukraine, according to a report from Amnesty International, as evidence emerged in local media of the volunteer militias beheading their victims.

Armed volunteers who refer to themselves as the Aidar battalion “have been involved in widespread abuses, including abductions, unlawful detention, ill-treatment, theft, extortion, and possible executions”, Amnesty said.

The organisation has also published a report detailing similar alleged atrocities committed by pro-Russian militants, highlighting the brutality of the conflict which has claimed over 3,000 lives.

Amnesty’s statement came before images of what appeared to be the severed heads of two civilians’ started circulating on social media today, identified by Russian news channel NTV as the heads of rebel hostages.

Shortly after, Kiev-based news network Pravilnoe TV reported that it had spoken with one of the mothers of the victims who confirmed her son was a rebel, captured during fighting in Donetsk.

She said she had received her son’s head in a wooden box in the post, blaming nationalist volunteers for her son’s death. …

There are over 30 pro-nationalist, volunteer battalions similar to Aidar, such as Ukraina, DND Metinvest and Kiev 1, all funded by private investors.

The Aidar battalion is publicly backed by Ukrainian oligarch Ihor Kolomoyskyi, who also funds the Azov, Donbas, Dnepr 1, Dnepr 2 volunteer battalions, operating under orders from Kiev. Last spring Kolomoyskyi offered a bounty of $10,000 of his own money for each captured Russian “saboteur”. …

“According to the government these volunteers always operate under an overall command and control of one of their regular forces,” Denis Krivosheev of Amnesty International told Newsweek.

Amnesty’s report, however, indicates Kiev’s loose regulation on volunteer groups and its “members… act with virtually no oversight or control”.

Amnesty has asked for Kiev to clarify the legal status and affiliation of its volunteer battalions and fully integrate them into “clear chains of command”, making all of its servicemen aware of international law and implementing “effective investigations” into abuses of human rights.

Meanwhile Norwegian channel TV2 presented footage yesterday of the Azov battalion flying flags with the symbols of Ukraine’s neo-Nazi party – Patriot of Ukraine.

… However, numerous powerful paramilitary groups are reportedly involved in the Ukrainian conflict such as Patriot of Ukraine, Right Sector and White Hammer.

Ukrainian soldiers with nazi symbols on helmets

NBC News in the USA writes about this photo:

Ukrainian soldiers with Nazi symbols on their helmets, including the swastika and the SS runes of Hitler’s infamous black-uniformed elite corps.

From NBC News in the USA:

German TV Shows Nazi Symbols on Helmets of Ukraine Soldiers

Germans were confronted with images of their country’s dark past on Monday night, when German public broadcaster ZDF showed video of Ukrainian soldiers with Nazi symbols on their helmets in its evening newscast. In a report on the fragile cease-fire in eastern Ukraine, Moscow correspondent Bernhard Lichte used pictures of a soldier wearing a combat helmet with the “SS runes” of Hitler’s infamous black-uniformed elite corps. A second soldier was seen with a swastika on his gear. “Volunteer battalions from nearly every political spectrum are reinforcing the government side,” the ZDF correspondent said in his report.

The video was shot last week in Ukraine by a camera team from Norwegian broadcaster TV2. “We were filming a report about Ukraine’s AZOV battalion in the eastern city of Urzuf, when we came across these soldiers,” Oysten Bogen, a correspondent for the private television station, told NBC News. Minutes before the images were taped, Bogen said he had asked a spokesperson whether the battalion had fascist tendencies. “The reply was: absolutely not, we are just Ukrainian nationalists,” Bogen said.

Neo-nazis from Greece, Italy and Scandinavia are among the paramilitary neo-nazi groups joining Kiev’s military forces against separatists in East Ukraine. The presence of the Greek neo-nazis was revealed on Telegraph by the head of one of the most powerful paramilitary groups, the Azov Battalion: here.

An Israeli citizen who was captured by the Ukrainian army while fighting on the side of pro-Russian rebels was freed in a prisoner swap on the weekend, according to the IzRus news website. Alexander Vitko was one of 38 Donetsk People’s Republic fighters exchanged for 35 Ukrainian soldiers on Saturday in Konstantinovka, 60 kilometers from Donetsk. The exchange was organized by the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe. He told Russian reporters after the exchange that he had joined the rebels “to defend the freedom of the people”: here.

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