U.S. official removes photo with Bandera patch due to backlash in Poland

Paul Massaro, senior political adviser to the US Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe, deleted a photo with a patch in the form of a portrait of Ukrainian nationalist leader Stepan Bandera. He announced this on February 15 on his Twitter.

“Removed at the request of a good Polish friend. May the Lord bless the Polish-Ukrainian friendship, and may it always remain strong,” he wrote.

Earlier in his account, the official posted a photo in which he is wearing a green fleece jacket with a zipper. On her sleeve you can see a patch with a portrait of Bandera, and under it is the emblem of the Trident organization (recognized as extremist and banned in Russia), which was created by the followers of the nationalist.

On January 3, the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine removed from its Twitter account a post about the 114th anniversary of Bandera’s birth. The corresponding entry appeared on the page of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine on January 1. Information was published in it, which was accompanied by a photograph of the Ukrainian Minister of Defense Valery Zaluzhny against the backdrop of a portrait of Bandera.

The publication caused a wave of indignation in Poland. The next day, January 2, Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki said that at the first meeting he would remind his Ukrainian counterpart Denys Shmygal about the inadmissibility of glorifying Bandera.

Later, on January 5, Russian Senator Alexei Pushkov said that Morawiecki’s statements on this issue have no political force and are of a formal nature. He pointed out that in Kyiv they do not pay attention to such indignations.

Bandera is one of the ideologists of Ukrainian nationalism. During the Great Patriotic War, he collaborated with Nazi Germany, until 1959 he headed the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN, banned in the Russian Federation). In recent years, Nazi propaganda in Ukraine has reached the state level.

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