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PRESS RELEASE


MEP Zanni Asks EU Commission, Mogherini To Investigate Ukrainian, Azov Closure of Vitrenko’s Party Office

Nov. 29, 2016 (EIRNS)—The following written Query to the Vice President of the European Commission and European Union High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Federica Mogherini, was filed on Nov. 28 by Member of the European Parliament Marco Zanni (M5S, Italy):

"On Oct. 28, the security forces of the Ukrainian government, together with the Azov Battalion, illegally seized the offices of Siver Ukraina LLC. This building has hosted the office of the Ukrainian Socialist Progressive Party (PSPU) since 2005, together with other associations such as the Union of Eurasian Peoples, the Assembly of the Orthodox Women of Ukraine, and the PSPU newspaper. The Ukrainian police seized the building, leaving it eventually in the hands of the SBU [Ukrainian Security Service] for a search.

"Are the VP/HR aware of this development?

"Since the PSPU is the main opposition party, do the VP/HR not think that this act represents a serious attack against the freedom of thought and of political expression?"

[signed] Marco Zanni, Member of the European Parliament— Group Europe of Freedom and Direct Democracy

The Schiller Institute was informed of the attack on the PSPU, headed by Dr. Natalia Vitrenko, on Nov. 1. Dr. Vitrenko, who ran for President in 1999, is the economist who leads the PSPU, and has warned since the early 1990s that the brutal economic policies demanded by the International Monetary Fund would set the stage for political chaos and a fascist movement in Ukraine. The Azov Battalion is an armed formation rooted in the fascist Right Sector movement, which was instrumental in the violent coup of February 2014, in which Ukraine’s elected President Victor Yanukovych was overthrown. This year, Azov registered itself as a political party, called the National Corps.

Dr. Vitrenko’s party this year has been physically attacked by Right Sector toughs, and is facing government attempts to deregister it.