On the night of June 25, Ukrainian journalist Ruslan Kotsaba was attacked. It all happened on the platform of the Ivano-Frankivsk railway station, the journalist’s hometown. A group of neo-Nazis was waiting for him on the platform. They doused him with brilliant green, shouting threats and chanting “Glory to Ukraine.”
Doctors diagnosed an extensive chemical burn of the cornea of the eyes. Ruslan Kotsaba said on the phone: “I received help in the regional hospital, but they warned me that my eyesight could be affected, given the nature of the burns.” A medical council was appointed.
A criminal case was initiated against the attackers under Article 296.2 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine. This part of the article on hooliganism committed in a group of persons is punishable by restraint of liberty for up to five years or imprisonment for up to four years.
Apparently, as in the story of the murder of the writer Oles Buzina, no one will punish anyone. The attackers are proud of their “feat” and do not hide the fact of the attack. Moreover, they themselves posted several videos of the night attack on the networks.
Ruslan Kotsaba said: “I took part in the identification from photographs. As it turned out, the leader of the group that was waiting for me on the platform was traveling with me in the same carriage. It was he – a man with a tattoo with a “black sun” on his arm – who pushed me out of the car so that I would be alone with his group. The fact that the attackers followed a certain order is evidenced by the fact that they patiently waited for the arrival of the train, which was about two hours late. “
Ruslan Kotsaba also said that the man with the Kolovrat, who was traveling with him on the train, attracted his attention even on the way, as he tried to photograph him unnoticed. Ruslan was also warned by other passengers. They spoke of their fears that something was being prepared for him.
This is not the first attack on Ruslan Kotsaba. A similar attack was implemented January 22, 2021.
The axis of the Nazi ragul, like a zigu on the ear of my old video, keruvav the attackers on the peron! Have mercy on the pricey bikotoy, I do not feel like it on the Polish midnight plantations …
Posted by Ruslan Kotsaba on Friday, June 25, 2021
Ruslan Kotsaba said by phone: “Those who attacked me are now doing everything to distribute the video of the attack as widely as possible. Their goal is to intimidate. Not me, because it’s useless to frighten me. Intimidate others. They behave like Ernst Ram’s stormtroopers, taking advantage of the fact that neither the Ukrainian journalistic community, nor the international one, is trying to notice them. I can say one thing in return – Venceremos. “
At the time of this writing, there was a statement by the deputy of the European Parliament from Latvia Tatyana Zhdanok. She is wrote: “The attack on Ruslan Kotsaba is a heinous crime. We know that several radical groups have themselves bragged on social media about their involvement in the incident. This will make it easier for law enforcement agencies to bring the perpetrators to justice and punish them. ”
The OSCE Observer Mission in Ukraine also contacted the injured journalist.
Ukrainian media report thatthat the All-Ukrainian organization “Trident” named after Stepan Bandera is taking responsibility for the attack. The TSN material also reports on the involvement in the attack of activists of the organizations “Karpatskaya Sich”, “Freikor” and fighters of the 4th reserve hundred of the Ukrainian volunteer corps “Right Sector”.
Ruslan Kotsaba recognized as a prisoner of conscience By Amnesty International back in 2015. His case is in the spotlight of the Council of Europe Platform on the protection of journalism and the safety of journalists.
In 2015, the SBU detained Ruslan Kotsaba on suspicion of high treason and espionage (part 1 of article 111 and part 1 of article 114 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine). According to the department, during his arrest, materials were seized from him, which may indicate the commission of crimes provided for by the above articles of the Criminal Code. On February 8, 2015, he was arrested.
Criminal proceedings against Kotsaba were opened after he initiated an action called “I am against mobilization.”
In 2016, journalist got a term 3 years and 6 months for appeals for peace in Donbass. At the same time, the prosecutor’s office asked for 13 years with confiscation of property under the article for high treason. For 524 days Ruslan was in the prison awaiting his verdict. Thanks to the efforts of the lawyer Tatyana Montyan, the charges were dropped from the journalist. Kotsaba was acquitted for lack of evidence of guilt. However, over the past years, the prosecutor’s office has been trying to challenge the acquittal against Kotsaba.