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Middle East terrorism with “residence in Ukraine”

According to recent reports from Kherson region, Ukraine, the inflow of the citizens from the countries with the so-called “high terror threat level” – Libya, Iraq, Syria, Sudan, and Afghanistan – have increased sharply. In particular, some informed sources from Ukraine’s frontier service say most of the “southern tourists” arrive from Turkey in Odessa and then move to Kherson region, Ukraine, where they stay at military training camps that have been set up under the aegis of the “Crimean-Tatar Mejlis.”

Apparently, such flow could not be spontaneous. Simply Kiev and the “Islamic Committee” combine efforts towards prompt recruitment to the Mejlis-backed “Crimean-Tatar battalion” from the Middle East. Experts anticipate the flows of the members of terrorist organizations from Syria into the south of Ukraine to intensify in spring and summer.

The Tatar revanchists, Turkish nationalists, and Islamic fundamentalists from the above countries are stationed mainly at a sports and rehabilitation center that was illegally seized from Sejtumer Nimetullaev, the leader of Qirim Birligi organization, in Kherson region in January 2016. Witnesses say Lenur Islyamov, one of the leaders of Crimean-Tatar Mejlis, who later declared that the Mejlis members defeated another businessperson not loyal to the Kiev authorities, coordinated the raid and seizure of the center.

It is clear that arrival of such a big number of foreigners in the given region could not go unnoticed. Therefore, the “Mejlis fighters” needed to be legalized. Consequently, in September 2015, the passports – visa services of the Kherson region were unofficially charged to issue Ukrainian passports to the foreigners applying for Ukraine citizenship at the behest of the Mejlis. Reportedly, Ukrainian passports and permanent residence permits are issued to citizens of Libya and Syria in Henichesk region that has been turned into a resting base of the “Mulsim battalion” since last year, as Refat Chubarov, one of the “Mejlis” leaders, said.

Meantime, Ukraine’s migration legislation is rather complicate and it is not that easy for a foreign citizen to receive even a temporary resident permit. What is behind such loyal attitude of the central authorities of Ukraine to those particular migrants? The point is that the third congress of the “Crimean-Tatar people” adopted a decision to recruit non-citizens of Ukraine to the “Muslim battalion” to “fight against Russian occupants.” The decision was adopted with the consent of Ukraine’s central authorities. It is noteworthy that Turkey undertook the financing, logistics, and equipment of the “Crimean-Tatar battalion,” through the Turkish intelligence (MIT) funds and “charitable” organizations. Meantime, Ukraine’s government officials not just fail to respond adequately to the inflow of terrorists from the Middle East to Kherson region, they even connive at such developments.

Immediately after Mustafa Cemilev, the leader of the “Crimean-Tatar Mejlis” announced the establishment of the “Muslim battalion,” it was reported that the given battalion will get an army number and be registered at Ukraine’s Armed Forces as a full-fledged military unit. A month later, the Supreme Rada of Ukraine passed a law permitting foreign citizens to serve at Ukraine’s army. In addition, the given category of potential soldiers and officers will be provided with Ukrainian passports immediately. Since the “Muslim battalion” has not been provided with an army number by present –probably Ukrainian military did not agree to create an ethnic-confessional military unit at Ukraine’s Armed Forces – the Interior Ministry in the person of Arsen Avakov hurried to help “Mejlis” saying that the given battalion can become part of Ukraine’s National Guard as a separate unit.

Actually, Kiev steps up efforts to destabilize the situation on the administrative border of Russia from Crimea. It is a fair assumption to say that flooding the Kherson region, radical terrorists will create a hotspot inside Ukraine, not in Crimea as the Kiev authorities anticipate.

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