Ukraine Information Group launched
London, 3 October 2022
A group of labour movement activists has launched a unique service to English language readers: up to date information about Ukraine, based primarily on independent Ukrainian voices from the front line and first-hand testimony from Russian-held territory.
The Ukraine Information Group produces a weekly Bulletin, highlighting material translated by Ukrainian civil society organisations who wish to get their message about, particularly about the areas occupied by Russia.
The Group aims, working in the labour movement and civil society organisations, to strengthen solidarity with the Ukrainian people resisting Russian military aggression.
Its aims state: “Conscious of the ‘propaganda war’ waged on all sides, we aim to make accessible reporting and analysis by voices independent of the state.” The Group focuses on the Russian-occupied areas because (1) the situation there throws light on Russia’s imperialist war aims and methods of rule, and (2) there are limited sources of reliable information from those areas.”
The Group started in March, with calls by elected local government representatives to support their counterparts in Ukraine who were being intimidated with kidnappings and other violence in areas occupied by the Russian army. Appeals were organised in the UK and in Switzerland.
In July 2022 the Group held two online discussions with Ukrainian civil society activists about the situation in the Russian-occupied areas, attended by supporters from across Europe. Links to recordings are here.
The Ukraine Information Group is hostile, as a matter of principle, to Russia’s imperialist assault on Ukraine. But, on the other hand, it does not automatically give unconditional or unquestioning support to the Kyiv government. The UIG stands in the tradition of socialist internationalism and seeks to work in particular with like-minded progressive organisations throughout Europe.
Convenor Simon Pirani, honorary professor at the University of Durham, said: “With the Russian announcement of annexations we have gone past another dangerous turning point. To do anything here in the UK to support Ukrainian resistance, reliable information and informed analysis is a prerequisite.”
Supporter John Palmer, former Political Director of the European Policy Centre and Europe editor at the Guardian, said: “We are committed to supporting Ukraine’s demands on the United Kingdom and the European Union for greater and continuing military, economic and social support, but we will judge NATO’s military support specifically on whether it is designed to strengthen Ukraine’s struggle against the occupiers rather than pursuing a wider NATO/Russia geo-political military confrontation which could risk the use of nuclear weapons.”
Supporter Mike Phipps, who writes for the Labour Hub website, said: “We’re not in competition with other organisations that are doing excellent work in solidarity with the people of Ukraine. Our aim is to play a specific role – bringing to a wider audience news and analysis from Ukrainian sources that can help people in the UK understand the dynamics of the situation.”
To get in touch with the Group, e-mail 2022ukrainesolidarity[at]gmail.com. Follow on Twitter @UkraineIG
News from Ukraine Bulletin 14 (2 October 2022)
A Digest of News from Ukrainian Sources
News from the territories occupied by Russia:
Ukraine war: Tortured for refusing to teach in Russian (BBC News, October 1st)
Russian occupation means 14-year sentences for being Ukrainian and refusing to ‘confess’ to insane charges (Kharkiv Human Rights Protection Group, September 30th)
Russian occupiers force doctors and teachers of Mariupol to hand over their Ukrainian passports (Ukrainska Pravda, September 29th)
More than 500 Russian war crimes recorded in liberated Kharkiv Oblast (Ukrainska Pravda, September 28th)
“Grenade under every pillow”: occupiers mine houses and schools in Kharkiv Oblast (Ukrainska Pravda, September 28th)
Mutilated bodies in Izium mass graves and other atrocities after Russian invaders driven out (Kharkiv Human Rights Protection Group, September 28th)
Teenager among six killed in shelling of Donetsk market (Reuters, September 22nd)
About the referendums on joining the Russian Federation:
Dead souls and infants ‘voted’ in Russia’s sham ‘referendums’ on annexing Ukrainian territory (Kharkiv Human Rights Protection Group, September 30th)
Ukrainians evicted from their homes for refusing to participate in Russia-organised sham referendums (Ukrainska Pravda, September 29th)
After destroying Mariupol, Russia claims its residents ‘voted’ for annexation and mobilizes them to fight Ukraine (Kharkiv Human Rights Protection Group, September 28th)
Russia needs sham ‘referendums’ on occupied territory to forcibly mobilize Ukrainians as cannon fodder (Tribunal for Putin, September 27th)
‘Vote to join Russia’ or armed soldiers will come for you (Kharkiv Human Rights Protection Group, September 26th)
Sham referendum in Melitopol: people are forced to “vote” instead of their absent relatives and neighbours (Ukrainska Pravda, September 26th)
Sham referendums: Russian occupiers stage a farce with fake employees near ZNPP (Ukrainska Pravda, September 26th)
News from Ukraine – general:
Civilian car convoy attacked in Kharkiv Oblast: 24 dead, including a pregnant woman and 13 children (Ukrainska Pravda, October 1st)
Analysis and comment:
The Ukrainian State under Russian Aggression: Resilience and Resistance (by Serhiy Kudelia in Current History, October 2022)
How Can Labour Help Ukraine Win – recording of Labour Party fringe meeting by the Ukraine Solidarity Campaign (September 29th)
Ukraine: bogus ‘anti-imperialism’ serves the Kremlin (People and Nature, September 28th)
What’s the future of Russia’s Ukraine war? (Open Democracy, September 26th)
Taras Bilous on motives for Russian intervention (Twitter, September 23rd)
Positions of the global left over the abyss of imperialist escalation (Commons journal, September 6th)
Analytical review of civilian casualties:
Firearms attacks during the Russo-Ukrainian war (Tribunal for Putin, September 26th)
This bulletin is put together by labour movement activists in solidarity with Ukrainian resistance. More information at https://ukraine-solidarity.org/. We are also on Twitter. Our aim is to circulate information in English that to the best of our knowledge is reliable. If you have something you think we should include, please send it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
To receive the bulletin regularly, send your email to email@example.com. To stop it, please reply with the word “STOP” in the subject field.
Thanks to Simon Pirani for the heads-up. ||| TRR