Location Ukraine Ukraine

Shocking Analysis from the Prosecutor General Office: Poroshenko and all who fought there will answer for Donbass

This report – in Russian as well as English – is on the Ukraine Prosecutor’s judgement that the army in Donbass is acting illegally. It is very important, not just for Ukraine but also because it means the West has been supporting war crimes for the last six years. It is one of the Western narratives that is starting to unravel.

Posted by Oleg Tkachuk, May 30, 2019

Originally appeared in Vesti

Translated by Alan Freeman
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The Armed Forces of Ukraine in the Donbass are employed illegally – this was the conclusion reached by experts from the office of the Ukrainian Prosecutor General. According to Oleg Zhivotov, the lawyer of the former head of the [arrested – AF] General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Vladimir Zamana, these results of their examination are contained in the report on suspicions against his client.

The experts’ conclusion are shocking and most importantly, they cannot be undone. It now turns out that everyone who fought in the Donbass violated the Constitution of Ukraine. This threatens any Ukrainian soldier, National Guard or volunteer. True, the Geneva Convention may come to their aid – after all, they were under oath and acted on orders. But this convention does not protect Petro Poroshenko, supreme commander. But first things first.

Prosecutor General’s Office spawns legal Chernobyl

Vladimir Zamana’s lawyer, Oleg Zhivotov, believes that the decision of the examination puts Ukraine in jeopardy. In addition, the findings of the examination cannot be canceled, because they are already documented. Zamana, it should be recalled, is suspected of treason and the collapse of the Ukrainian army in the period from 2011 to 2013, when he allegedly reduced the numbers of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.

“For the first time in the history of Ukraine, experts have recognized that according to Article 17 of the Constitution of Ukraine, the Armed Forces of Ukraine cannot be involved in any conflict within the country. They are intended only to repel external aggression. What Russian propaganda has said repeatedly – that our Armed forces are involved in ATO illegally – for the first time in the history of Ukraine, our expertise has recognized this. No one pays attention to all the comments of the defense party to the court that we are documenting ourselves for the international court on such crimes. There is expertise, it cannot be canceled, it cannot be withdrawn too, ”says Zhivotov.

What is the upshot? In the sixth year of the war in the Donbass, the official status of the Ukrainian military, deployed there, is blurred. The reintegration of the temporarily occupied territories also remains clouded.

Lawyer Rostislav Kravets told Vesti that for a long time no legal grounds existed that could justify the presence of the Ukrainian Armed Forces in the Donbass. The reason is Petro Poroshenko’s desire to manipulate the law in his own interests.

“We are trying to twist the facts. We talk about war and prisoners of war, but war has not been declared. The Armed Forces of Ukraine are indeed forbidden to take part in conflicts within Ukraine. The AFU was created to repel aggression, and not to suppress unrest and demonstrations. For this there is the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the National Guard. Legally, the status [of AFU] is not defined – and politicians for 5 years, including Poroshenko, in every possible way tried to interpret this issue in their own interests. The findings of the examination are not surprising, ” says Kravets.

It is noteworthy that the Ukrainian side regularly makes statements about a war directly with Russia. However, in international speeches this line is not always voiced by the supreme commander.

Military expert Oleg Zhdanov, in a comment to “Vesti”, said that there really were grounds for  recognizing the actions of the Armed Forces of Ukraine as illegal. Thus, the Ukrainian soldiers, who are protecting against aggression, are placed in jeopardy.

“In August 2016, at a meeting of the PACE, Poroshenko stated that the Armed Forces of Ukraine confront … Ukrainian citizens. But this means that the AFU grossly violates the Constitution of Ukraine. They are designed to protect against an external enemy. Today, the situation with the AFU is suspended in mid-air. The law of reintegration allegedly allows for ATO [Anti-Terrorist Operation] or OUF [Operation of United Forces – ATO rebranded in 2018], but it directly contradicts the Constitution of the country, ” says Zhdanov.

The fate of soldiers who fought in the Donbass will be decided by foreign courts at their discretion

Ukrainian soldiers who fought in the Donbass may be even more vulnerable when traveling abroad. In the prison in the city of Pavia in Italy for two years is a war veteran, a fighter of the National Guard, Vitaly Markiv. According to the Italian prosecution, the National Guard was an illegal armed group, not a state structure, and Markiv acted not as a serviceman, but as an armed militant.

Such precedents await the Ukrainian military in other countries, and now it is possible to refer to, among other things, the conclusions of their own – Ukrainian – expertise. This will help in the prosecution of the Ukrainian military by interested persons.

According to Rostislav Kravets, this conclusion will help Russian propaganda. However, each court will interpret this decision in its own way: “Of course, this is a big blow to Ukrainian propaganda – and a big plus for Russia. The examination itself does not affect anything, but in each country the court may refer to it ”, says Kravets.

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