On May 24, 2017 the Times published the article by Moscow correspondent Tom Parfitt “Wish you were here: visit Ukraine rebels tell tourists”. It is with deep concern that we read in such respected mass media an article, which basically advertises tourism in the occupied territory of Ukraine, controlled by the pro-Russian terrorists.
Since February 2014 Ukraine has been in a state of international armed conflict with the Russian Federation. For three years Ukraine alongside with the international community has been facing Russia’s armed aggression and hybrid threats, which acquired the forms of manipulation of public opinion, misrepresentation of information and intentional spread of disinformation. In the Ukrainian occupied territories there are no “rebels” but regular Russian troops supported by pro-Russian separatists.
As you rightly pointed out, due to the Russian aggression in Ukraine at least 10 thousand people lost their lives and 1,5 million became internally displaced persons. The Russian Federation has been constantly sabotaging a peace process under the Minsk agreements and today uses all in its power to further separate the occupied territories from Ukraine.
Under this background I find it cynical to advertise so called “tourism” in the occupied areas held by terrorists and propagate their bloody business to the wide public.
H.E. Mrs. Natalia Galibarenko
Ambassador of Ukraine to the UK