Ad notam. Diverse years' notes/2.47

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Ukrainian Nationalist Organization Supports Chechen Hostage-Takers[edit]

25.10.2002

An Ukrainian radical organization asked the Chechen terrorists to release Ukrainian hostages An Ukrainian radical nationalist organization (known for its initials as UNA-UNSO) reminded Chechen terrorists that Ukraine has always supported the struggle for Chechnya's independence. The organization asked the Chechen terrorists to release hostages of the Ukrainian nationality. This was reported by the chairman of the regional division of UNA-UNSO in the city of Lvov, Ostap Kozak.

Ostap Kozak particularly said: “According to the information that we have, there are about twenty Ukrainian nationals among the hostages in music theatre in Moscow. Taking this fact into our consideration, the UNA-UNSO administration reminds the Chechen rebels that Ukraine has always sympathized with their struggle for the liberation of Chechnya. We often rendered direct humanitarian and informational support to their struggle.”

According to Kozak, holding the Ukrainian hostages in Moscow is not logical. He said that this will not assist in the friendly relations between Ukraine and Chechnya. “We acknowledge the truth of Chechens’ requirements. They have endured these claims for years,” said the Ukrainian nationalist.

UNA-UNSO is ready to send a delegation to conduct negotiations pertaining to the release of the Ukrainian hostages. We asked our correspondent in Ukraine, Andrey Lubensky, to comment on the situation.

“Indeed, UNA-UNSO has always said that it was on the side of the Chechen rebels. This organization not only talks, but also acts. Many of its gunmen took part in military actions against the federal forces of Russia. It was rumored that wounded Chechen guerrillas were treated on the territory of Ukraine. Jahar Dudayev’s wife (the former president of the Chechen republic) visited Ukraine after his death. The late UNA-UNSO ideologist Anatoly Lupinos visited Chechnya and then educated the members of his organization on the “fair struggle of the Chechen people against the Russian empire.”

“The UNA-UNSO position has not changed. They perceive Chechen terrorists as fighters for the freedom of Chechnya. That is why their recent statement is not surprising at all. It is conspicuous for its cynicism, but there is nothing unusual or new about it, really,” our correspondent Andrey Lubensky said.

Translated by Dmitry Sudakov