: Kremlin propagandists spotted in anti-Ukrainian campaign in Netherlands

20:28 Apr. 4, 2016

Kremlin propagandists spotted in anti-Ukrainian campaign in Netherlands

A man holds the Ukriane flag as demonstrators for a "YES" vote for Wednesday's upcoming EU-Ukraine referendum gathered in Amsterdam, Netherlands, April 3, 2016. (AP Photo)

Netherlands to hold referendum on E.U.-Ukraine deal on April 6

Kremlin-backed propagandist Sergey Markhel has been spotted working for opponents of the Ukraine-EU Association Agreement from the GeenStijl movement in the Netherlands, according to Ukrainian online newspaper Europeiska Pravda.

Earlier, Markhel was often involved in activities of Russia's embassies in E.U. member states.

Read also #DUTCHINUA: Dutch PM believes Ukraine-EU Association may win majority in referendum

Now he is campaigning against the Ukrainian Association in the Netherlands, using a badge of the organizer.

According to the report, many Russian propaganda theses can be heard at such events, in particular, that Ukraine is integrated into the E.U. against its will, about "a coup d'etat" during Maidan events, about the need to respect the interests of Russia. Another propagandist mantra is that the Netherlands will "save the E.U. from Putin's anger" if the Dutch stall the Association Agreement with Ukraine.

Read also Ukrainians run 65km Hague-Amsterdam marathon for Association Agreement

Another propagandist, Polish citizen Tomasz Maciejczuk, nicknamed by the Ukrainian community in the Netherlands "the Russian Embassy's in-house provocateur," has also been seen in anti-Ukrainian events. Maciejczuk goes from one to another panel discussion, calls himself a journalist but he does not name his media outlet, and accuses Ukraine of oppressing Russian-speaking people and those who disagree with the Ukrainian authorities.

The Netherlands will hold a consultative referendum on the Ukraine-E.U. Association Agreement on April 6. The question that will be asked is whether a voter is for or against the ratification of the agreement. The referendum was initiated by GeenPeil, a politically geared initiative by GeenStijl, a Dutch weblog known for its provocative content and its past hoaxes.

Read also Ukrainian students campaign in Amsterdam in support of Ukraine

Ukraine's Ministry of Foreign Affairs claims that whatever decision has been taken at the Dutch referendum, this will not stop Ukraine's European integration.

Reporting by UNIAN.

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