Members of Latvia’s “National Alliance” Party Cooperate With Ukrainian Neo-Nazis

Members of “National Alliance” work closely with Ukrainian ultra-right extremists, reports the “Re:Baltica” center of investigative journalism. They are united by the idea of Intermarium, an alliance of countries between the Black Sea and the Baltic Sea. The DELFI website briefly recounts the main facts.

On the website “New Nationalism“, the Secretary General of “National Alliance”, Raivis Zeltīts, outlined his forecast of Europe’s future – first the EU will fall into several regional blocs, then Russia will break up, and Western Europe will be captured by Islamists. Then Intermarium – the union of Latvia, Estonia, Lithuania, Ukraine, and the countries of the Visegrád Group – will become a bulwark of European civilisation.

Supporters of the Intermarium idea are members of Ukraine’s “National Corpus“, which is the political wing of the “Azov” volunteer regiment. The US State Department describes “National Corpus” as a “nationalist group promoting hate”, and Freedom House considers the organisation to be extremist. According to “Bellingcat” reports, “Azov” officials openly promote “white terrorism” and glorify far-right terrorists such as Brenton Tarrant and Anders Breivik.

In Latvia the main supporter of the idea of Intermarium is the member of “National Alliance” and National Guardsman Agris Purviņš, who has repeatedly visited Ukraine in recent years. He told “Re:Baltica” that his main contact in Ukraine is Elena Semenyaka – the international secretary of the “National Corpus” party. Semenyaka not only supports the creation of Intermarium, but also advocates for the Reconquista. In it Ukraine will become the “new Andalusia”, which will start to liberate Europe from migrants, liberals, and cosmopolites. She stated this in the broadcast of Reconquista Live on the “Azov” online radio in 2015. The host presented her as the “coordinator of the Ukrainian Reconquista”.

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Her close associate is Aleksey Levkin, a Russian political immigrant convicted of participating in a neo-Nazi gang that killed migrants. And he is also a key character in the online platform “Wotanjugend”. In this organisation there is a cult of Hitler and the Third Reich; its participants glorify “white terrorists”.

Semenyaka and Levkin created the Asgardsrei Festival of national-socialist black metal. Its guests in 2016 were members of “National Alliance”. Parallel to the festival is a conference bearing the same name as the treaty on a military-political alliance between Hitler’s Germany and fascist Italy – the Pact of Steel. It is dedicated to Intermarium and the recruitment of Reconquista militants.

Semenyaka claims that Agris Purviņš spoke at the conference. Purviņš himself says that he was present only at the musical part of the festival. The ideological content of the festival was “of little interest to him”. To the direct question about the organisers’ open sympathy for German Nazism, Purviņš said that in Hitler-era Germany everything was not so unambiguous: “Even the Soviet Union was not all bad – the nicest ice cream there was. So too in Germany.”

The official reason for the visit was the opening of an exhibition in the Latvian embassy dedicated to General Radziņš. Purviņš said that he would not have been able to organise this exhibition without the help of Zeltīts and his colleague in “National Alliance” Dace Kalnina. According to him, they were already connected with “Azov”.

The second Intermarium conference was held in April 2017 and was attended by the now late representative of “National Alliance” Konstantīns Pupurs. In September 2018 Dace Kalnina and Elena Semenyaka performed as lecturers at the nationalist festival Goloseyevskaya Kryivka in Kiev. A few days later Semenyaka arrived in Latvia – she visited the Saeima and in Bauska gave a speech dedicated to Intermarium.

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During this event Purviņš learned about Konovalets School, a military-educational institution created by the “Azov” regiment. In February 2018 Purviņš visited the “Azov” base, after which he brought a delegation of the school to Latvia in May of this year. The delegation visited the General Staff of the Latvian Army, the National Guard training center, and held a solemn ceremony near the wall of Riga Castle.

Although National Guard has an official cooperation agreement with the National Guard of Ukraine, Konovalets School is not on the Guard’s list of training structures. To the request of “Re:Baltica”, the Defence Ministry press service replied that Latvia “has been and will continue to support all those who advocate democracy, as well as the territorial integrity of the country and sovereignty in accordance with internationally recognised norms”, however, without explaining how the views of Azov’s representatives meet these criteria. Defence Minister Artis Pabriks said that certain facts talk about nothing, but only help Russia accuse Latvia of Nazism.

Purviņš himself says that he is not close to the Nazi and racist views of Azov’s representatives. Yet since the birth rate of Africans and Muslims is increasing faster than that of Europeans, a global interracial conflict could soon begin, said Purviņš. He believes that neo-Nazism is a natural reaction to immigration in Europe from other races, and he holds Western European governments responsible for “white terrorism”.

Zeltīts and Kalnina declined to comment on the story. “National Alliance” Co-Chairman Raivis Dzintars told “Re:Baltica” that “National Alliance” representatives had come into contact with the “Azov” movement as individuals and that the geopolitical views of “National Alliance” Secretary-General Zeltīts did not characterise the party’s policies and ideological attitudes.

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