In Digest, Ukraine

A resident of Odessa was arrested on Sunday, Dec. 7 for wearing a St. George Ribbon. It is the organge and black ribbon that is worn in the former republics of the Soviet Union, including Ukraine, to commemorate the war against Nazi Germany and the millions of people who died fighting fascist Germany.

The man wore the ribbon to the traditional Sunday memorial meeting for the victims of the May 2, 2014 massacre of anti-fascist protesters in Odessa. Police who were patrolling the event ordered him to remove the ribbon.. He refused and was arrested.

As reported by a the correspondent of Odessa News, the man asked police why they were demanding he remove the ribbon. The head of the police squad repolied, “Because it is a provocation.” To which the resident answered,  “Show me the law where it is forbidden to wear the ribbon”.

According to eyewitnesses, police Colonel Alexei Vdovichenko tried to remove the ribbon by force but the man wearing it defended himself. The colonel then ordered his subordinates to arrest the activist, using the pretext that he addressed police with obscene words. Watch the man’s arrest in this YouTube posting (or click the screen below).

Family and friends of the man stayed for two hours beside the van where he was being held and demanded that police release him. Finally, police did so. He was given a date for a court appearance to face a charge of assaulting police officers. (News rerpot in Russian here.)

And here is the St. George’s ribbon that so angers police in Odessa as well as
people who sympathize with the wartime collaborators of Nazi Germany,
such as Ukrainian right-wing nationalist hero Stepan Bandera:

St. George's Ribbon worn by a participant at an antiwar rally in Winnipeg, Manitoba on May 10, 2014, photo by Winnipeg Free Press

St. George’s Ribbon worn by a participant at an antiwar rally in Winnipeg, Manitoba on May 10, 2014, photo by Winnipeg Free Press






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