A scandal is surfacing in one of the Ukrainian units attempting to quash revolt in the eastern regions. Turning out to be non-existent on Kiev’s books, the fighters who were denied food and service pay now seek truth in the capital.
The Ukrainian government has been using National Guard conscripts as a major assault force in attacks on anti-Kiev forces in the east of the country. It is mostly the guards, many of whom are members of the ultranationalist Right Sector movement, who have been shelling the city of Slavyansk and the villages around it with mortars and Howitzers to force the pro-federalist region of Donetsk into submission.
Now an entire unit of the National Guard has revolted and is heading back to Kiev, claiming they have been abandoned by the government and left unpaid.
“According to official papers, we don’t exist! We’re an illusion. It’s like we haven’t been deployed here, we haven’t got any ammunition – nothing!” claimed the commander of the Third squadron of the First reserve battalion of the National Guard, Lieutenant Taras Zherebetsky.
He said that all documents of his detachment have disappeared as if they had never been created.
“We were sleeping on the ground, because we didn’t even have tents! They just sent us there – and forgot about us! And while all the generals and commanders were sitting pretty in their warm tents, guarded by the newest APCs, we were sent to fight like cannon fodder,” Zherebetsky said.
Other members of the National Guard said that sometimes they had to buy their uniform themselves and the body armor was given by sponsors, not the government.
The siege of the city of Slavyansk in east of Ukraine continues, which remains a focal point in the conflict. Last night residents of the city were woken up to see the sky lit by firebombs being dropped on their city.
Locals say artillery fire has been ongoing for days. Schools, hospitals and government buildings have been partially destroyed. Water and power supplies are practically stopped.
Ukraine’s Health Ministry says 270 people have been killed in the military operation in the east, and about 700 were injured, since Kiev began its military assault against protesters.
See our earlier article
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