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08.11.2017

AN INFORMATION MEMO ON THE INSTANCES OF ANTI-UKRAINIAN ACTIVITIES IN POLAND

 

 

        I. Between 2014 and 2016, the provocations against the Ukrainian community in Poland and against Polish-Ukrainian relationships have been organized and coordinated in south-eastern Poland. These provocations had the form of defacing and destruction of memorials associated with the period of the Second World War and the Polish-Ukrainian struggles in the post-war period.  Destruction and desecration occurred in:

 

Białystok neer Liski (ukr. Білостік), municipality of Dołhobyczów, Lublin Voivodship

Hruszowice (ukr. Грушовичі), municipality Stubno, Subcarpathia Voivodship

Monasterz (ukr. Монастир), municipality Horyniec Subcarpathia Voivodship

Wierzbica (ukr. Вербиця), municipality Lubycza Królewska, Lublin Voivodship      

Radruż (ukr. Радруж), municipality Horyniec Zdrój, Subcarpathia Voivodship       

Mołodycz (ukr. Молодич), municipality Wiązownica, Subcarpathia Voivodship

Pikulice (ukr. Пикуличі), powiat Przemysl

Werchrata (ukr. Верхрата), municipality Horyniec

        In the cases of Białystok, Hruszowice, Wierzbica, Mołodycz, the Ukrainian memorials were destroyed several times. The perpetrators have not been established in any of the events and the investigations by the Polish authorities were closed without conclusions, despite the fact that there was footage from the desecration and destruction of graves and monuments, with clearly visible participants and the logo of the organization named The Camp of Great Poland. This was posted on the YouTube channel of David Hudżca, the editor of the Russian portal Novorosya Today.

 

Links to the footage:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5cDuXL_D2bQ

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZishvGTfIU0&app=desktop    

 

II. There were placement of anti-Ukrainian leaflets in the Ukrainian Catholic Cathedral in Gdansk, and anti-Ukrainian writings on the walls in cities of Przemyśl and Cracow;

   

III. There was the destruction of the cross dedicated to the Heroes of the Maidan in the city of Bartoszyce;

 

IV. There were several cases of obliteration of Ukrainian flag in the city of Olsztyn;

V.  On 26 June, 2016, there was an attack by Polish nationalists on a religious procession walking to the cemetery of soldiers of the Ukrainian People’s Republic (1918-1920) who fought on the side of Poland. Among the procession participants were the Archbishop Evhen Popovych, the Metropolitan of the Ukrainian Catholic Church in Poland, numerous priests, nuns, parishioners together with their children, the Counsellor of the Embassy of Ukraine in Poland and delegations from Ukraine. There were cases of physical attacks, profanation of religious banners and verbal threats that are punishable under Polish law. The case is in court, there are 19 defendants;

 

VI. On July 1, 2016, the traditional Ukrainian cultural event "Ivan Kupala" in Przemyśl was cancelled due to threats from anti-Ukrainian groups and pressures from the City Government, as well as the refusal by the police and authorities to secure public order;

 

VII. On July 3, 2016, the Minister of Internal Affairs of Poland personally authorized the entry ban to Poland for the Ukrainian folk group "OtVinta", which was accused by sport fans from the city of  Przemyśl and its Mayor of spreading political extremism;

 

VIII. On July 3, 2016, Polish far-right extremists organized a protest during the concert of the Ukrainian band "Joryj Kłoc" in Warsaw;

 

IX. On August 24, 2016, nationalistic and pro-Russian demonstrators at the Embassy of Ukraine in Warsaw attempted to beat and verbally threaten a citizen of Ukraine, who was passing by and was wearing a shirt with the emblem of Ukraine. During the demonstration the participants disseminated the idea of changing the post-war order in Europe;

X. The Ministry of Internal Affairs initially ignored a request by national minorities to organize a special meeting of the Joint Commission of the Government and National Minorities, which was supposed to be devoted to the alarming situation in Przemyśl. After convening the meeting on 5 October 2016, the Commission refused to invite (contrary to earlier arrangements) representatives of Polish NGOS and experts from the Ukrainian community, who are specializing in the fight against hate speech and discrimination;

 

XI. There were public speeches of politicians and local leaders against the Ukrainian minorities with false accusations of Ukrainians in Poland in provocative destruction of Ukrainian graves, and cooperation with Ukrainian special services (i.e. A. Zapałowski in the newspaper "Nasz Dziennki” (Our Daily) on 30.05.2015; M. Majkowski in Radio Rzeszów on 22.08. 2016);

 

X. On October 15, 2016, during the broadcast titled "The Press Review on Radio", which was broadcast by the Polish Radio Koszalin, the show co-host Mr. Wojciech Cejrowski uttered the following words: "Ukrainians are rapists and butchers"; "So if you ask whether all Ukrainians, I conclude that all."

 

Link to the broadcast:

 

http://www.radio.koszalin.pl/pl/program-issue/rapp-radiowy-przeglad-prasy-rapp-radiowy-przeglad-prasy.11048.html

 

XI. On the morning of October 26, 2016, police officers made searches (without the prosecutor's sanctions) at the home of a member of the Ukrainian community near the city of Ketrzyn. The cause for the search was suspicion of committing a crime of promoting a totalitarian regime by his son who was seen wearing a shirt with the tryzub, the coat of arms of Ukraine. In December the case was closed; 

 

XII. On 11 November 2016, during the March of Independence in Warsaw, the Ukrainian flag was burned;

 

XIII. There is a growing wave of anti-Ukrainian hate in the Internet (hateful entries, defamatory songs, spreading of false news). No progress has been made in the investigations for the previously named cases, which were reported to the Polish authorities by representatives of the Ukrainian community;

 

XIV. There were cases of placing stickers "Volyn we remember" (a reference to the events in the Ukrainian province of Volyn during WWII where thousands of Ukrainians and Poles were killed in a war between two nations) on the tram stops, and posting posters on the windows in the Ukrainian House at 1 Zamenhof Street in Warsaw;

 

XV. In the south-eastern province of Malopolska, there were instances of destruction of village signs where the names of the village were written in the Lemko dialect (a local dialect of the Ukrainian language). The names of the villages were written in Cyrillic beside the Polish name, and were established in accordance with the law on National Minorities and Regional Language in the villages of Gładyszów (destroyed three times in 2016); Regietów (2015); Ropki (2016);

  

XVI. On November 7, 2016, in the parking lot at the Ukrainian Catholic Cathedral in Przemysl the tires of two cars belonging to people from the community were slashed. This instance was recorded by a surveillance camera. The video was given to the police. It was the second such case in Przemysl in the last six months. The first occurred after the assaults by Polish nationalists on the religious procession on June 26, 2016.

 

XVII. While passing by the Ukrainian National House in Przemysl, a participant of a patriotic Polish demonstration was shouting "Death to Ukrainians" on December 10, 2016. The event was organized under the patronage of the Deputy to the Polish Parliament Wojciech Bakun; Institute of National Remembrance, the Rzeszow branch; the Mayor of the city of Przemysl, Robert Choma.   During the walk, banners of the Camp of Great Poland were exhibited, the same organization that has sponsored destruction and profanity of Ukrainian graves and memorials in the south-eastern Poland;

 

XIX. At the beginning of March 2017, unknown perpetrators once again slashed the tires in the car of Paul Striłka, a President of the Association of Ukrainian Political Prisoners and Repressed Persons;

 

XX. On 26 April, 2017, on the eve of the commemoration of the 70-th anniversary of the Operation "Wisła" (the forceful deportation of 150 000 Ukrainians from their native lands by the Polish authorities), a monument for the soldiers of the Ukrainian Insurgent Army in the village of Hruszowice was destroyed in the village’s cemetery. Destruction was made by the activists of the Ruch Narodowy  (National Movement) and people involved for years in anti-Ukrainian activities.

 

XXI. On 3 June, 2017, hooligans attacked the Ukrainian Basilian Church in Przemysl. The offenders destroyed decorative clay pots with flowers set on the steps leading to the temple;

 

XXII. On June 23, 2017, the Union of Ukrainians in Przemysl received a letter from the managing company of the Krasiczyn Castle with a refusal to grant a permit to organize a cultural event “The Kupala Night”. The reason that was given was "the need to report this event as the mass event and the need to ensure adequate physical protection", although that event cannot be qualified in the light of the law as a mass event, and there were no objections during the signing of an initial agreement a year earlier. From 1989 onwards, there were dozens of similar cases of refusal of lending (also for a fee) the object for events organized by the Ukrainian minority in Poland, including even Festivals of Ukrainian Culture, which were organized in 1995 and 1999 under the auspices of the Ministers of Culture of Poland and Ukraine);                         

 

XXIII. On 24 June, 2016, in the morning hours, the exhibition window was broken in the building of the "Narodnyi Dim" (The National House) in Przemysl. The building is the headquarters of the Union of Ukrainians in Poland, Przemyśl branch). The damage was estimated at Polish zloty 680 ($200). In the exhibition window, the information about the cultural activities carried out by the Union were displayed;

 

XXIV. There were dozens of the physical attacks on citizens of Ukraine in Poland. There were cases of the being beaten, having damage done to their property, and insults directed at them on the basis of their nationality. Instances occured in Lodz, Kutno, Brzeszcze, Legnica, Rzeszów, Wroclaw, Swidnica, Olsztyn, Rudnik nad Sanem, Nowa Huta, Warsaw, Charzynie k. Gdansk, Szczecin, Wodzisław Śląski, Poznań, Częstochowa, Gdańsk, Lublin;

  

1.     http://www.rmf24.pl/goraca-linia/wasze-fakty/news-ukraincy-pobici-przez-polakow-na-podkarpaciu-policja-sprawdz,nId,2309214

2.     http://lodz.onet.pl/polska-dla-polakow-i-ukrainskie-kuy-napad-na-ukraincow-i-rasistowskie-napisy-na/er6c3f

3.     http://www.dzienniklodzki.pl/na-sygnale/a/atak-na-ukraincow-w-kutnie-napastnicy-kazali-im-wynosic-sie-z-polski-wideo,9348112/

4. http://www.gazetakrakowska.pl/ wiadomosci/malopolska-zachodnia/ a/brzeszcze-skatowali-w-sklepie-ukrainca-zdjeciawideo,9872311/

5.     http://www.gazetakrakowska.pl/ wiadomosci/malopolska-zachodnia/ a/brzeszcze-skatowali-w-sklepie-ukrainca-zdjeciawideo,9872311/

6.     http://swidnica24.pl/pobili-i-wywiezli-ukrainca-do-lasu/

7.     http://rzeszow-news.pl/brutalne-pobicie-ukrainca-w-rzeszowie-4-osoby-zatrzymane/

8.     http://www.fakt.pl/wydarzenia/polska/wroclaw/wroclaw-ukrainiec-pobity-przez-kolegow-z-budowy/ 59sne0r

9.     http://www.polskatimes.pl/artykul/ 9348112,atak-na-ukraincow-w-kutnie-napastnicy-kazali-im-wynosic-sie-z-polski-wideo,id,t.html

10. http://www.nowiny24.pl/wiadomosci/ rzeszow/a/mieszkancy-rzeszowa-pobili-studentow-z-ukrainy,11722560/

11. http://www.dziennikbaltycki.pl/ wiadomosci/gdansk/a/pobicie-ukrainca-w-gdansku,12395197

12. http://www.gazetakrakowska.pl/ wiadomosci/podhale/a/brutalny-atak-na-ukraincow-wybite-zeby-na-krupowkach,11761340/

13. http://krakow.tvp.pl/30208177/ aresztowano-sprawcow-pobicia-nastolatka-z-ukrainy

14. http://metrowarszawa.gazeta.pl/ metrowarszawa/7,141637, 21821852,zaatakowal-pare-na-ulicy-bo-rozmawiala-w-innym-jezyku-pobil.html? utm_source=facebook.com&utm _medium=SM&utm_campaign=FB_metro

15. http://trojmiasto.wyborcza.pl/ trojmiasto/7,35612,21889822,w-chwaszczynie-zaatakowano-dom-w-ktorym-mieszkaja-ukraincy.html?disableRedirects=true

16. http://szczecin.wyborcza.pl/szcze cin/7,34939,21966087,ciezko-pobili-wedkujacych-ukraincow-zrobilismy-to-bez-powodu.html

17. http://katowice.wyborcza.pl/katowice/7,35063,21966816,19-latka-zaatakowala-ukrainca-na-przystanku-zadala-mu-kilkanascie.html

18. http://poznan.wyborcza.pl/poznan/7,36001,22067978,wy-z-tego-kraju-antyukrainski-incydent-w-barze-z-pierogami.html

19. https://wiadomosci.wp.pl/brutalnie-pobil-kobiete-w-centrum-miasta-myslal-ze-jest-z-ukrainy-6141933509965953a?src01=6a4c8& src02=facebook_wp

20. http://czestochowa.wyborcza.pl/czestochowa/7,89625,221530 29,w-czestochowie-pobili-okradli-i-zniewazyli-ukrainca-sa-zarzuty.html

21. http://www.dziennikbaltycki.pl/wiadomosci/gdansk/a/pobicie-ukrainca-w-gdansku,12395197/, http://trojmiasto.wyborcza.pl/trojmiasto/7,35612,22242427,w-centrum-gdanska-pobito-ukrainca-sprzedajacego-kebaby.html?disableRedirects=true

22. http://www.kurierlubelski.pl/wiadomosci/lublin/a/pobicie-ukrainki-w-centrum-lublina-uderzyli-ja-butelka-w-glowe-policja-szuka-sprawcow-zdjecia,12416492/

23. http://www.dziennikwschodni.pl/lublin/zatrzymany-za-brutalne-pobicie-ukrainca-pogryzl-wlasna-reke,n,1000204796.html

 

Piotr Tyma

Warsaw,  July 2017

 

 

 

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