The Prosecutor General has served a notice of suspicion of high treason on Oleh Voloshyn, a member of parliament from the banned pro-Russian Opposition Platform – For Life party, as reported by the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) and the State Bureau of Investigation (SBI) Feb. 10.
The investigation revealed that, during 2020-2021, the lawmaker was involved in spreading Russian propaganda narratives and assisting the military and political leadership of the Russian Federation in conducting subversive activities against Ukraine.
According to the SBI, his words distorted the state of affairs in the military and political life of the country, in social issues that are sensitive to people.
"Among other things, Voloshyn deliberately manipulated Ukrainian public opinion in the interests of the aggressor country. In particular, he provided distorted information about our country's military-political and social spheres in his speeches and interviews… Other activities of Voloshyn prove that he deliberately acted to the detriment of the sovereignty, territorial integrity, inviolability, defense capability, state, economic and information security of Ukraine," the SBU statement said.
It is the first case for a politician spreading Russian propaganda in Ukraine. Petro Okhotin, political strategist turned soldier for the Armed Forces of Ukraine, commented on Voloshyn’s case:
“I had public debates with Voloshyn on TV shows. Should the people who promoted Russian narratives be held accountable under the law? Yes. It is necessary.
If the Russians had captured Kyiv, these pro-Russian experts would most likely have remained on TV. Pro-Ukrainian speakers would have been either sidelined or physically destroyed,” he said.
SBU officers, along with the SBI, are conducting investigative actions at the registration addresses of the suspect and his relatives and connections. According to the SBU, Voloshyn is abroad, and measures are being taken to bring the lawmaker to justice.
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