Russian mercenaries fighting in Ukraine, including the Kremlin-backed Wagner Group, have been linked to far-right extremism including an organisation designated by the US as terrorist, analysis reveals.
Although Vladimir Putin says his “special military operation” is aimed at the “denazification” of Ukraine, an investigation has found links between pro-Russian forces and violent rightwing extremism, including those directly affiliated with Wagner.
One post on the messaging app Telegram, dated 15 March, shows the flag of the Russian Imperial Movement (RIM), a white-supremacist paramilitary organisation which the US lists as terrorist, allegedly flown by Moscow-backed separatists in Donetsk. The post was shared by a pro-Putin channel.
Much of the extremist content, posted on Telegram and the Russian social media platform VKontakte (VK), relates to a far-right unit within the Wagner Group called Rusich with others linked to pro-Kremlin online communities, some bearing the name and logo of Wagner Group.
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