Ukrainian Commander Seen Wearing Daesh Patch, Raises Concerns of Extremist Links

Ukrainian Commander Seen Wearing Daesh Patch, Raises Concerns of Extremist Links

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – A series of photographs and video clips has been released by the Associated Press (AP) that purportedly show several fighters aligned with Ukraine on the front lines of the Donetsk region.

One of the soldiers, identified by the outlet as a Ukrainian unit commander called Kurt, can be seen wearing a Daesh (ISIS or ISIL) insignia on his left arm.

The revelation raises concerns over possible extremist links among Ukraine's military personnel, who have previously been caught on camera wearing Nazi insignia, including Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky's associates.

Earlier this week, Zelensky published several photos of Kiev's soldiers on his Instagram account, including one where a serviceman was resting in a trench while wearing a ‘totenkopf’ (death’s head) skull patch, a symbol of the 3rd SS Tank Division infamous for massacring civilians in France and the Eastern Front, including Polish Jews.

In May, Zelensky shared an image of a soldier with a similar skull-head patch, but later deleted it. In October, he was photographed on a visit to the frontline while being surrounded by security guards wearing the same insignia.

Kiev has denied any neo-Nazi elements in its military, dismissing such assertions as "Russian propaganda." However, Moscow has repeatedly pointed to the fact that Kiev welcomes fighters with radical nationalistic and neo-Nazi views. One such example is the incorporation of the Azov Regiment, which uses the SS-affiliated wolfsangel (wolf’s hook) rune as its official symbol, into Ukraine's National Guard.

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