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A list of “undesirables” has been published in Ukraine encouraging citizens to become informers for the security forces targeting leftists accused of supporting the Russian invasion of the country.
The Brown List’s anonymous authors claim to be progressives, but it has been compared to the notorious Myrotvorets (peacemaker) list launched by the former governor of Lugansk oblast George Tuka in December 2014.
The website was allegedly backed by the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) and published the personal data of those deemed to be “enemies of Ukraine.”
In May 2016, it published the personal data of 4,508 journalists and other media members from all over the world who had worked or had received accreditation to work in the eastern Donbass region.
Opposition politician Oleg Kalashnikov and journalist Oles Burzina were killed by neonazi forces days after their names appeared on the list, while journalists were subjected to death threats.
Nearly 200,000 names were believed to be on the Myrotvorets list, including residents of Crimea. Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s name was added in 2018 while US actor Steven Seagal and French film star Gerard Depardieu are also included.
Italian journalist Andrea Rocchelli was added to the list following the Maidan coup in 2014.
He was killed by the Ukrainian army the same year and a file was found in the Myrotvorets Centre with the word “liquidated” written over his photograph.
Mr Rocchelli was accused of collaborating with “pro-Russian terrorist organisations.”
The Brown list has been condemned as a new attack on civil and social rights which critics say were being systematically suppressed in Ukraine even before the Russian invasion.
The list names a large number of communists, journalists, academics and leftist politicians and invites people to submit names for inclusion.
Canadian journalist Eva Bartlett has claimed to be on a Ukrainian government kill list since reporting from the Donbass region.
Patrick Lancaster has received threats to his life for his journalism in the same part of the country.
Earlier this month the Morning Star reported on the case of opposition politician and journalist Anatoly Shariiy who was detained in Spain in a joint operation with the SBU.
Fears have been raised over the risk posed to his life should he be deported.
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