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City exhibition on Ukraine features Nazi symbols
Luxembourg

City exhibition on Ukraine features Nazi symbols

2 min. 13.06.2015 From our online archive
An exhibition in Luxembourg City's Place Guillaume II on life in the Ukraine under conflict features Nazi symbols, representatives of déi Lénk have pointed out, calling on City authorities to take action.

(CS) An exhibition in Luxembourg City's Place Guillaume II on life in the Ukraine under conflict features Nazi symbols, representatives of déi Lénk have pointed out, calling on City authorities to take action.

The symbols appear on a cap worn by a Ukrainian fighter of the Azov unit, a volunteer paramilitary battalion fighting pro-Russian separatists. The unit has been associated with the neo-Nazi movement, also in its use of the “Wolfsangel” and black sun in their insignia.

The “Wolfsangel” was an early symbol of the Nazi party and was used by several SS units throughout WW2. It is banned in Germany. The black sun is also associated with the SS and frequently used by neo-Nazi groups.

Amnesty International in 2014 reported war crimes committed by the Azov unit in the Ukraine, including unlawful detention, ill-treatment and abduction of victims, as well as possible executions. A UN report on the human rights situation in Ukraine also raised serious questions about the Azov and other similar volunteer units.

Polfer says not responsible

The exhibition in Luxembourg City, which features a picture of an Azov fighter, was organised by the Ukrainian embassy in Belgium, the Ukraine mission to the UN and the Ukraine's honorary consul to Luxembourg in coordination with the City of Luxembourg.

It aims to show life in Ukraine during the current conflict and the country's fight against pro-Russian separatists in a conflict that has lasted for over a year, mainly in the east of the country.

Déi Lénk City councillor Guy Foetz this week raised the issue with mayor Lydie Polfer, calling for the photo to be removed, saying that the image “honours a militiaman of a regiment composed, at least in part, by neo-Nazis and which proudly displays the symbols of a right-wing ideology, which thousands of citizens of our country were victim to during the Second World War.”

Polfer replied that she would pass the matter on to the Ukrainian embassy, saying that they were in charge of the project.

The response drew criticism from déi Lénk who said that the mayor should take responsibility in the matter and take action to remove the photo.

It said that tolerating such an image in an exhibition held under the banner of the fight for “peace, freedom and democracy” was unacceptable on the part of the City of Luxembourg.