Who Killed Motorola? Unexpected Evidence Casts Shadow on the Ukrainian Security Council

Translated by Ollie Richardson & Angelina Siard



The legendary commander of the anti-tank “Sparta” battalion of the Donetsk People’s Republic Arseny Pavlov (Motorola), blown up on the evening of 16th October in the elevator of a high-rise buildings in Donetsk, is absent from the sanctions list of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine (NSDC), approved by the decision of 16th September 2016, “about the use of personal special economic and other restrictive measures (sanctions)”. Strange, isn’t it?

The next day after the murder of Motorola, the President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko by decree No. 467/2016 put the NSDC’s decision into effect. The decision includes four lists, two of which contain the data of 682 individuals against which sanctions are imposed. The NSDC’s decision recognises the people who Ukraine applied sanction measures to as entities creating “an actual or potential threat to the national interests, national security, sovereignty, and territorial integrity of Ukraine, facilitating terrorist activity.”

In the first list there are 347 names and not a single Pavlov. In the second there are 335 names with three Pavlovs: Andrey in the LPR, Aleksandr and Sergey from Crimea. There is no Arseny Pavlov. There are the acting heads of the Republics Zakharchenko and Plotnitsky, as well as the former heads of the DPR and LPR Bolotov and Boroday. Strelkov is there too. There are the commanders Bezler, Khodakovsky, and Kozitsyn. There is Mikhail Tolstykh (Givi), the commander of the “Somali” battalion. Militias and commanders, whose military work particularly vexed the forces of the so-called Anti-Terrorist Operation, deputies and officials of the republics, representatives of militia and Prosecutor’s office – all of them are on the sanctions list of the NSDC. But Arseny Pavlov is not on these lists.


The 2015 sanctions list can be found on the official parliamentary website. There, under the number 317, is Arseny Sergeyevich Pavlov, Motorola. Alive


On 16th September, 2016 (a month before the murder) NSDC already lists Motorola as dead, striking No. 317 off the sanctions list. Then this list remained dormant for a month and, finally, the day after the attempt on Arseny Pavlov is successful, the NSDC’s decision on the introduction of personal sanctions is signed by Poroshenko. Someone still doubts the involvement of the authorities of Ukraine in this murder?

At this time it is highly unlikely that a person can be found who is able to call into question the notability of Motorola in Ukraine: the Ukrainian side even appealed to Interpol with the request to put Arseny Pavlov on the international wanted list on the basis of charges given to him in absentia by the SBU, but in the summer of 2016 it was rejected. For several months the Ukrainian Bureau of Interpol urged the Central office of the need to search for Motorola on Interpol, however, the desire of Kiev was not fulfilled. As a result the Security Service of Ukraine declared: will be looking commander “Sparta” on their own. The Western media published photos of the wedding of Motorola, and after he was killed Arseny Pavlov was called a “Prominent rebel warlord” (The Guardian).

Nevertheless, on the sanctions list of National Security Council of Ukraine (which the SBU, who were searching for Motorola, is a part of) on the 16th of September 2016 the most dangerous “enemy of the state,” Arseny Pavlov, hero of the DPR, was not on it.

There is no logic either. Horrifying logic appears in only one case: if in the National Security and Defence Council, already before 16th September (more than a month before the day of the murder) they already knew that Motorola would be killed. It means that the special operation to eliminate him was planned, elaborated, and the highest officials of Ukraine were informed about it – the members of the National Security and Defense Council.

That’s why there is no Arseny Pavlov on the sanctions list. They planned to kill him before 16th September 2016. And then, when the attempt failed, until the introduction of the decision about personal sanctions took effect, i.e. before the presidential decree No. 467/2016 from 17th October 2016. And the day before the introduction of the decree Arseny Pavlov was killed in a terrorist attack.

DONETSK, UKRAINE. 9 MAY, 2016. Soldiers of the Donetsk People's Republic's armed forces take part in a military parade in Donetsk, the capital of the self proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic, celebrating the 71st anniversary of the Soviet victory over Nazi Germany in the Great Patriotic War. Mikhail Sokolov/TASS Украина. Донецк. 9 мая 2016. Веоннослужащий армии ДНР с позывным "Моторола" Арсен Павлов (справа) во время военного парада, посвященного 71-й годовщине Победы в Великой Отечественной войне. Михаил Соколов/ТАСС

On the day of the entering into force of decree No. 467/2016, on October 17th, on the official website of the National Security and Defense Council a short message appeared, stating that National Security and Defense Council didn’t introduce any change in the decision of September 16th, 2016 September. And most importantly, the National Security and Defense Council reports that on September 16th, 2016, the sanctions “concerning all individuals (except those who died) and legal entities, which was introduced on 16th September 2015”, were prolonged.

The curtain is closed.

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