Azov Battalion

Initially a volunteer militia, formed as the Azov Battalion on 5 May 2014 during the 2014 Ukrainian crisis, it saw its first combat experience recapturing Mariupol from pro-Russian separatists forces in June 2014. On 12 November 2014 Azov was incorporated into the National Guard of Ukraine. The National Corps is the parliamentary wing of the Azov battalion. Olena Semenyaka, the "International Secretary of National Corps, the parliamentary wing of the Azov Movement"1 as well as "coordinator of the Department of International Relations of the 'Azov' regiment 'Azov Reconquista'."2

"... highlighted the origins of the Azov Movement as the Ukrainian nationalist organization of the new generation named The Patriot of Ukraine, which emerged in the Eastern Ukrainian city of Kharkiv and, since its very inception, had a mature paneuropean thinking, as well as regularly conducted paramilitary training. When the Maidan Revolution broke out, members of The Patriot of Ukraine were well-prepared to fight the police, first within the broad national-revoutionary movement of Right Sector, then, after their unalterable leader Andriy Biletsky was released from prison, as the newborn Azov Movement."1

The regiment's first commander was far-right nationalist Andriy Biletsky, who led the neo-Nazi Social-National Assembly and Patriot of Ukraine.3

In an interview with Andriy Biletsky (Андрій Білецький) in the Ukrayinska Pravda, Biletsky stated about Roman Zvarych:3

"- Roman Zvarych, who in 2015 was the head of the headquarters of the Central Committee "Azov", helped somehow financially?

- Roman Zvarych did not help financially. This is a fact.

- Maybe he helped with the right acquaintances?

- I think that we have provided more vital contacts to Roman and Svetlana Zvarych than they have to us.

- Why did you start cooperation with the Minister Zvarych of Yushchenko's times?

- It was in August or September of the year 2014. Through the Zvarych Foundation, we were partially assisted by volunteers.

At that time, we had a zero, or even negative political experience. Of which Zvarych has a lot. At the initial stage, Zvarych helped us with political advice. That's all...