In Digest, Ukraine, March 27, 2015

Blowing up administrative buildings captured by rebels in eastern Ukraine one year ago could have saved thousands of lives in the military conflict that followed, Ukraine’s interior (police) minister, Arsen Avakov, told a TV channel.

Arsen Avakov, photo by Sergey Kozlov, RIA Novosti

Arsen Avakov, photo by Sergey Kozlov, RIA Novosti

“We should have blown the Donetsk administration to pieces [after it was captured by protesters]. There’d be 50 dead terrorists, but we wouldn’t have 5,000 deaths in the Donetsk region. Likewise, should have been done with the Security Service headquarters in Lugansk (also captured by the rebels), but were we ready for this?” Avakov told 1+1 TV channel, as cited by RIA Novosti.

Avakov acknowledged that this statement is bad for him, as he is on the wanted list in Russia.

Responding to Avakov’s  provocative statement, Franz Klintsevich, a member of the Russia’s State Duma (Parliament) is cited by RIA Novosti, “Arsen Avakov sees the main mistake of the Kiev authorities in not conducting mass murder of the protesters right after the conflict emerged. He means, in this case the others would have changed their minds. A truly cannibalistic point of view,” he said.

Kiev has “done its homework” and is now ready to return the rebel eastern regions at any price, without respect to possible losses among civilians, Klintsevich said.

In early April 2014, public protests engulfed cities of Eastern Ukraine following the bloody coup in the capital Kiev that resulted in dozens of deaths. The citizens were protesting against the regime change and demanded a referendum on the federal status of the region and recognition of the Russian as a second language.

Kiev answered those demands by launching a punitive military operation against the rebel regions. To date, according to UN data, more than 6,000 people have died in the conflict.

In June 2014, Russia’s Investigative Committee launched a criminal case against Avakov and against the former governor of Dnepropetrovsk, oligarch Igor Kolomoysky. According to the Investigative Committee’s information, starting from April 12, 2014, Avakov and Kolomoysky organized and managed the military operation carried out by the Ukrainian military, the special forces of the Ukrainian Interior Ministry, the National Guard and the militants of the ultra-nationalist Right Sector organization that formed volunteer battalions, several of which have been continuously financed by Kolomoysky.

Ultra-nationalist warlord in Defense Ministry

The notorious leader of Ukrainian ultra-nationalists, the head of neo-Nazi Right Sector movement, Dmitry Yarosh, has been invited to join the country’s Defense Ministry. The invitation came directly from President Petro Poroshenko, who has just fired billionaire Dnepropetrovsk governor Igor Kolomoysky, who owns a private army of his own.

Arsen Avakov’s aide, Anton Geraschenko, has confirmed the proposal made to Yarosh, saying that he personally “would like to see Dmitry Yarosh joining state service”.

According to Geraschenko, Yarosh could start organizing a Volunteer Defense Union “similar to systems already existing in Estonia, Finland and Switzerland”. Yarosh is an elected member of the Ukrainian parliament.

Russia issued an international warrant for the arrest of Yarosh in July 2014. He is wanted by Russia’s Investigative Committee in connection with several criminal cases, including calling for terrorist activities on the territory of the Russian Federation.

Read also:
Right Sector insignificant? Ukraine president offers Defense Ministry post to neo-Nazi, Sputnik News, March 27, 2015

Right Sector negotiates joining Ukrainian Army as independent division under Yarosh command, Interfax Ukraine, March 28, 2015
The volunteer battalion Right Sector is ready to join the Ukrainian Army as a separate division under the command of Right Sector leader Dmytro Yarosh.


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