The Russian and Ukrainian armies are continuing to exchange fire. In Kyiv, the capital of Ukraine, the Homeland Defense Force created to enhance defense capabilities is continuing to expand. Some members of Ukrainian nationalist organizations have also signed up, hoping to strengthen Kyiv’s defense.
According to a report by the French 24 News Network on March 22, members of some Ukrainian nationalist organizations have recently joined the Homeland Defense Forces. They are stepping up training and will strengthen the defense capabilities of the suburbs of Kyiv.
French journalists visited one of the training centers, where members from the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN) conduct military training. One of the members, Oleg Magditch, was both a Protestant priest and deputy commander of the trainee unit.
“Most of our members have no military experience, so the goal now is to give them intensive training so they can meet the requirements of the front line,” Oleg said.
French media reported that OUN was just one of many Ukrainian nationalist organizations that were actively participating in the war against Russian troops on the front lines. But OUN is one of them with a “historical origin”. As early as World War II, OUN cooperated with the Nazi German occupation forces against the Soviet Red Army. After the Crimea crisis in 2014, some OUN members with military experience have been active in the Donbas region of Udong, fighting against local separatists. Oleg told French media that some members of the group “do have extremist political views”, but “this does not represent the whole”.
Russia has previously accused Ukraine of mobilizing a large number of ultra-nationalist or far-right groups to participate in the fighting.