In an unprecedented statement, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced Kyiv He has publicly distanced himself from the Ukrainian ambassador in Berlin Andrej MelnikAnd his statements about the controversial former national leader Stepan Bandera. In an interview with the journalist Telo Jong for the gate Jung und NaivMelnyk denied there was evidence of The massacres of the Jews During World War II by Bandera’s followers, the former leader of the Radical WingExcuse meUkrainian National Organization was founded In Vienna in 1929 Which aims in Ukraine to establish an independent state of a totalitarian nature. “Bandera was not a mass murderer of Jews and Poles,” the ambassador said. During the long conversation with the journalist, Melnik went on to say that Bandera “participated in the Holocaust – a role he claims the Russians attribute to him – and was also not cooperating with the National Socialists.” Indeed, it is known that in 1943, in the western part of Ukraine, the Bandera nationalists were architects Ethnic deportations in which tens of thousands of Polish civilians were killed. The Kyiv man’s wrath in Berlin sparked international outrage.
“The Poles massacred the Ukrainians too,” Melnik noted in another excerpt from the interview. Poland responded by stigmatizing the statements as a result of the desire to deny historical truth and the Foreign Minister Zbigniew Raw He immediately turned to his Ukrainian counterpart. To which he answered closely: “The opinion of the Ukrainian ambassador to Germany, Andrey Melnik, was expressed in an interview with a German journalist, It’s his personal opinion It does not reflect the positions of the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry,” as stated in a statement issued by Kyiv on Friday, while praising “unparalleled assistance.” Warsaw In the war against Russia and excellent diplomatic relations between Ukraine and Poland. Rau also thanked the Polish government for its “quick and prompt public intervention on this occasion.” The controversial interview with Melnyk sparked controversy even at home. Everyone knows that Bandera himself was held in a Nazi concentration camp Sachsenhausen From 1941 to 1944, after the war, after taking refuge in Germany, he was killed by an agent KGB Soviet 1959. But during the interview, journalist Young wanted to quote verbatim a leaflet that Bandera himself distributed in those years, where it was written: “Muscovites, Poles, Hungarians and Jews are your enemies, exterminate them!”.
“To say Bandera was not a mass murderer is an evasion by Melnik,” he tweeted. Francesca Daviesan Eastern European historian of the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität monk. “It cannot be proven that he personally participated in the massacres and was detained by the Germans shortly after the start of the war, but he was a central figure in the United Nations. How many Nazis did not kill themselves? But they were still multiple murders.” The ideology of the United Nations has permeated Anti-Semitism and severe adversity for the Poles as well as for the Russians: “All western Ukraine was crossed by horrific anti-Jewish pogroms in which the nationalist militia, acting as part of the local police, played a decisive role,” continues the historian. who cites well-known facts indicating that Ukrainian nationalists sought to contact her National Socialism Hoping to gain support for their independence project. As it turned out, the SS did not hesitate to choose Ukrainian prisoners of war as guardians of the Nazi concentration camps. But this is not the only position. Kay Struve, professor of Eastern European history at the University of Halle-Wittenberg, replied that “most of the local police forces involved in the massacres were not members of the United Nations” and noted that it was not only the interviewee, but also the interlocutor with whom he conducted a departure from historical reality. Journalist Young, according to Struve, had outpaced the Jewish death toll that is certainly attributed to the Nationalists.
To say the least about the question in Ukraine, especially Bandera’s character, is controversial. Many Ukrainians especially after the fall of the government Viktor Janukovych In 2014, they made Bandera a cult figure who recognized him as a partisan and national hero of the war of independence from the Soviet Union and all over the country dedicate him to him. hundreds of streets. After taking office in 2015, Melnik praised himself for going into the Formation of the Gods flowers on his grave in Munich. However, historian Francesca Davies always notes that “today also in Ukraine Bandera is considered a controversial figure. Although only since the 1990s has it been possible to speak openly and publicly about these issues, and the suffering of Jews and Jews in World War II was only officially recognized by the state from the war of national independence. It’s actually after Field For 2013/2014 that Ukrainian historians, overcoming obstacles and precarious conditions, began fundamental research on the Holocaust in the country, giving new impetus to debate in universities. The historian comments: “The new generations in particular are ahead of Melnik: they do not deny the facts and debate the issue.”
However, the unleashed controversy did not alarm the Ukrainian diplomat, who does not appear to be repentant. In fact, for a well-known pianist Igor Levit Calling his words a “hypocritical distortion of history,” he replied curtly via Twitter: “Ukrainians don’t need post-colonial historical advice from Germany.” Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky Last week ambassadors in five states resigned – notes Niels Metzger for ZdF – suggesting that the evolution of the discussion is being carefully followed in the Chancellery.