Putin Sent in Troops Disguised With White Peace Monitor Symbols and Ukrainian Uniforms, Says Kyiv

·2 min read
Reuters
Reuters

As part of their invasion of Ukraine, Russian forces have used insignia of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe to descend on several cities in the Luhansk region, Ukraine’s National Police warned Thursday.

“Columns of Russian tanks entered the Luhansk region at the borders of Krasnaya Talovka, Milove, and Gorodishche. The enemy insidiously placed white vehicles with OSCE symbols at the front. Fighting is currently underway there,” police said in a statement.

International monitors from the OSCE have been working along the frontline in Eastern Ukraine since 2014 to document fighting and ultimately help reduce tensions. The organization has condemned Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and called for an end to the war.

We Have Failed Ukraine—and All Those Erased By Putin

Similarly deceptive tactics by invading forces were reported elsewhere in the country.

After Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky announced the alarming news that Russian forces were trying to “seize” the Chernobyl nuclear plant, the site of the worst-ever nuclear disaster, residents in the area were quoted telling the UNIAN news agency that they had seen the troops make their way through by dressing up as peacekeepers. They reportedly made their way through in white trucks and armored vehicles that had “something like red flags” on the front.

Elsewhere, in Sarny, Rivne, Mayor Ruslan Serpeninov issued a video address to residents, warning them that sabotage and reconnaissance units were entering the country from Belarus wearing Ukrainian military and police uniforms.

He said the imposters were wearing red ribbons—a claim echoed by the National Police.

The police service called on citizens nationwide to be on the lookout for “suspicious people on the streets,” particularly those with “elements of red.”

They called on residents to call police immediately to report “suspicious people with elements of red on their clothes.”

The disguises were part of a multi-faceted attack Russia launched against Ukraine at dawn Thursday, after denying for weeks that any invasion was in the works. More than a dozen Ukrainians were reported dead in the first few hours of the offensive, some of them civilians.

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