Foreigners fighting for Ukraine demand citizenship

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On Oct. 17, some 30 foreigners who voluntarily fight for Ukraine in its war with Russian-separatist troops rallied near the presidential administration in Kyiv. They demanded President Petro Poroshenko to speed up the process of issuing Ukrainian passports to the foreign volunteers who want a citizenship.

Foreign fighters who battle against Russia-separatist forces in Ukraine’s Donbas have struggled to legalize their presence in Ukraine for a long time.

The participants of the rally, including the members of nationalist Right Sector and OUN battalions, together with the fighters of Azov Regiment argue that without a citizenship their stay on the territory of Ukraine is illegal.

Artem Skoropadsky, Right Sector spokesman, said that the Right Sector party has applied to the Presidential Administration to get Ukrainian citizenship for the Russian natives fighting in the battalion’s lines. They had no answer so far.

“Poroshenko promised to give Ukrainian passports to those foreign citizens who fight for Ukraine’s independence,” Skoropadsky said. “He called them ‘brothers,’ and I hope he sticks to his promises because most of those people can’t come back home where they would face criminal cases.”

Read the Kyiv Post story about the foreign fighters struggling to get citizenship here .

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