Translated by Ollie Richardson & Angelina Siard
The Kiev authorities repeats all the time that the victory over “occupiers” of Donbass and the ardent “aggression” of Russia is already near, thus, it is in this way that they try to distract the eyes of people from the real problems in the country, and from what is actually going on in the ATO zone.
During all the punitive operation in Donbass people died, among them civilians, militiamen, and UAF fighters, all sides have suffered huge losses, which very few people speak about in Kiev, otherwise propaganda would cease to work in the direction necessary for them. As was described by the leaders of the public organization “Union of Veterans of Afghanistan of the Lugansk Region”, who are engaged in gratuitous transportation of bodies from the frontline on both sides, hundreds if not thousands of UAF troops, who are considered as missing persons from the battles of 2014-2017, in reality died long ago and there are no chances of finding and identifying their bodies and transferring them to their relatives.
“Many of such military personnel of the UAF in Kiev are registered as being allegedly captured by militiamen, however in reality they died long ago. We often have to come out to the areas of combat, to conduct negotiations with the UAF and Kiev representatives, and then, risking our lives, to transfer the bodies and to exchange prisoners in pre-determined stipulated buffer zones,” said the Afghan veterans.
They emphasized that the main losses of the UAF were suffered in September, 2014, around Schastiye and at the beginning of 2015 in the Debaltsevo cauldron. The government in Kiev, as social activists say, recorded many of the dead and not found fighters of the UAF as prisoners of war, who are allegedly being held in the LPR, and some as missing persons. In recently created Donbass slang, such disappeared military personnel are called “Flying Dutchmen”.
“When in September, 2014, there were battles in the Lugansk-Schastiye direction, when a struck armored personnel carrier burned to the ground, inside of which were at least 10 UAF troops. We approached, there inside was only ashes, DNA couldn’t be taken from anywhere. Already there was nothing left from such fighters, and they will always be considered as missing persons. Unfortunately, this is the truth,” said the chairman of public organization “Union of Veterans of Afghanistan of the Lugansk Region” Sergey Shonin.
Moreover, Afghan veterans especially noted that they don’t take weapons in hand, otherwise negotiations and exchanges with Kiev would be immediately disrupted, and then those who couldn’t be recognized at least by DNA will continue to be considered either as prisoners or missing persons, but not at all dead.
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