This is potentially a huge story.
Yesterday, Alexander Bastrykin, head of Russia’s Investigative Committee [in American terms, he would be like the Head of the FBI] accused Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseny Yatsenuk of fighting in Chechnya (against Russia) in the 1990’s. Furthermore, he accused Yatsenuk of committing war crimes and killing Russian soldiers.
The First Chechen war lasted from 1994-1995. The war was internationalized and involved foreign fighters (assisting the Chechen side) from Muslim nations (such as Saudi Arabia), as well as anti-Russian fighters from nations such as Estonia, Gruzia, and Ukraine.
This piece from LifeNews gives more details about the accusations. Testimony against Yatsenuk comes from two Ukrainian prisoners being held in Russian detention, in the city of Piatigorsk, in the Northern Caucauses. These prisoners, who are slated to appear before the Supreme Court of Chechnya, are members of the Ukrainian “nationalist” (actually, fascist) organization UNA-UNSO. Their names are:
- Stanislav Klykh, well-known Kiev journalist who is also suspected of forming guerrilla band in the 1990’s. Klykh is accused of killing Russian soldiers, and also carrying out punishments and executions involving particular ferocity.
- Nikolai Karpiuk, also accused of participating in the guerrilla band.
Allegedly, in December 1994, Karpiuk, Oleksandr Muzychko (aka “Sashka Bily”) and other members of UNA-UNSO recruited fighters from Ukraine to fight on the side of the “Ichkerians” in Chechnya. Klykh joined a band named “Viking”.
Klykh and Karpiuk are being charged under Parts 1 and 2, Article 209 (“leading or participating in a band”, as in a bandit kind of band, not a musical band – up to 15 years of hard labor); and also points «в», «з», and «н» of Article 102 (meditated killing by a group, of two or more people as they fulfilled their official duties); and also Part 2, Article 15 (attempt to do thereof).
Now, returning to the question, whether the current Ukrainian P.M. Yatsenuk, had anything to do with this – allegedly both Klykh and Karpiuk have pointed the finger at “Rabbit”. And here is a quote from Russian top investigator Alexander Bastrykin:
“According to information we possess, Arseny Yatsenuk, among other active members of UNA-UNSO, in December of 1995 was awarded the highest medal by Dzhokhar Dudaev, ‘Honor of the Nation’, for his killing of Russian soldiers. Yatsenuk’s cohorts, under interrogation, characterize him as an educated man, highly intelligent, yet also cunning and slippery.”
Bastrykin claims that Yats, after doing whatever he did in Chechnya, slipped back into Ukraine at the start of 1995, by masking himself among a group of journalists.
Yatsenuk himself, who is currently on a visit to Poland, has denied the allegations, characterizing them as “crazy”. “This is a clinical case,” Yats huffs, “a clinical diagnosis of the Russian government: Stalinist justice coupled with Goebbels-like propaganda, all signed off on by Putin.”
Russian Vice-Premier Dmitry Rogozin shot back with the following barb:
“Banderites are not very good soldiers, but when it comes to torturing and killing POW’s – they are the best.”