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​‘EU more worried about its reputation, not extremism in Ukraine’

Published time: March 31, 2014 14:06
Supporters of the right wing party Pravyi Sector (Right Sector) protest in front of Ukrainian parliament in Kiev on March 27, 2014. (AFP Photo/Genya Savilov)

Brussels was busy with downplaying the role of the violent groups that influenced the so-called revolution in Ukraine, but now when it cannot be hidden anymore they have to distance themselves from the Right Sector,journalist Manuel Ochsenreiter told RT.

Brussels was busy with downplaying the role of the violent groups that influenced the so-called revolution in Ukraine, but now when it cannot be hidden anymore they have to distance themselves from the Right Sector, German journalist Manuel Ochsenreiter told RT.

RT: Moscow's been vocal about the extremist threat in Ukraine from the very beginning. Why only now is it worrying the EU?

Manuel Ochsenreiter: The EU is not worried about extremism or about violence in Ukraine. The European Union is actually worried about its own reputation, about the reputation of Brussels because they were busy with downplaying the role of these disgusting violent hooliganism groups taking influence on the so-called revolution in Ukraine. So now when it cannot be hidden anymore: they have to go on distance. This is the whole background of the condemning and of the criticism of Brussels against the Right Sector right now.

RT: Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said today he has information that it was the Right Sector coordinating snipers on Maidan Square in Kiev. Do you expect the West to react to this in any way?

MO: I don’t think the West will react directly on this because if it was as Minister Lavrov says, the West might know already because this all looks more like intelligence mission rather than extremist activity. We should get used to the idea that the Right Sector is not just a hooliganism extremist organization but it is also linked to international terrorism. We know that activists of the Right Sector were serving in the Chechen wars on the side of Chechen terrorists. They were serving in Georgia in 2008 at the war against Russia, so they are playing the role in the international terrorism, and this is a thing we should get used to slowly when we talk about groups like Right Sector.

RT: One prominent radical leader was shot dead this week. The Right Sector says the killing was ordered by the government. What do you think?

MO: It’s not very unlikely that government ordered the assassination of Muzychko. Now the so-called revolution Ukraine enters the period when the Right Sector, the violent infantry of this revolution, claims its place in power, in the government. And right now we are talking about this the West gets fuel on this radicalism spreading in Ukraine. So Muzychko might know about some things, about agreements with EuroMaidan. The actual Ukrainian government doesn’t have any interest at all that it comes to public as well as we should know that Muzychko himself was a mercenary serving in the First Chechen war on the side of the Chechen terrorists. So most probably Muzychko, not just a leading activist of the Right Sector was assassinated but as well an international terrorist.

RT: The far-right groups were a key factor in helping the new Ukrainian leadership come to power. But how much influence do you think they have on the current government?

MO: They have exactly as much influence as they have a power to threaten and to blackmail the actual EuroMaidan government or leading stuff in Ukraine. So this is why the EuroMaidan as well as the West by the way has in their interest to reduce that threat and the influence. Maybe we should see the actions taken now against the activists of Right Sector in that context to push down because for any ally of the so-called EuroMaidan revolution it is very bad for the reputation to be connected to those people.

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.