April 5, 2017 - Fort Russ News -
Mikhail Ryabov, PolitNavigator - translated by J. Arnoldski -
Yesterday, April 4th, the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine adopted the law “On Rehabilitating Victims of Political Repression,” which provides for pension payments for veterans of the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists and Ukrainian Insurgent Army. Before and during the Great Patriotic War, these organizations closely coordinated their operations with Nazi Germany’s special forces and fought against the Soviet Union.
The text of the law was presented from the rostrum by deputy Yurii Shukhevych, the son of Ukrainian Insurgent Army commander Roman Shukhevych. The deputy urged support for “victims of the totalitarian Bolshevik regime, fighters for Ukraine’s independence” and adding 25% pension bonuses for Banderites who were imprisoned and 12.5% for those in exile.
“Not so many people are left who stood up to death for the independence of our powerful state’s independence, who spent decades in prisons. I myself was brought up by the brotherhood of OUN-UIA in the Volyn region and I know these people. A handful of them are left. We should do everything possible so that these people feel the care of our state, particularly financially. This is how we can thank these people,” deputy Igor Guz from ex-PM Arseniy Yatsenyuk’s party stated in agreement with the law.
Ivan Kirilenko from Yuliya Tymoshenko’s Fatherland Party added: “I urge this entire hall to support this bill. This law is about justice, historical memory, and honoring people who had the dignity to fight for a future for Ukraine to take its rightful place in the European family of peoples. Let’s honor this handful of strong people.”
Andrey Lozovoy from Oleg Lyashko’s Radical Party also chimed in: “This law corrects historical injustice and confronts the 70 years of Soviet occupation that killed our national consciousness.”
Roman Semenukha from the Lvov mayor’s Self-Help Party supported going even further: “Ukraine resumed independence in 1991, but has not recognized 1922 to 1991 as Russian occupation. It is the Russian Federation that should be held responsible for these terrible crimes,” he said.
Verkhovna Rada Speaker Andrey Parubiy also called for the whole hall to vote for the law: “In this hall are many people whose families went through repression. My family was sent to Siberia, where my father spent 10 years.”
In the end, the law passed with 258 votes.
Interestingly enough, none of the deputies representing the Opposition Bloc or elected by majority districts in the South-East decided to take the floor and speak out against rehabilitating Banderites.
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