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Sunday, 7 January, 2001, 00:45 GMT
Programme exposes 'war criminals' in UK
Nazis
The Ukrainians are said to have belonged to a division of the elite Nazi SS
By Liz Blunt

Reports from Warsaw say the Polish Government is considering asking Britain to extradite former members of a pro-Nazi Ukrainian military unit who were given refuge in Britain after the Second World War.

The Ukrainians are accused of wartime atrocities not just in Poland, but also in Ukraine and Slovakia, in a British television documentary to be broadcast on the commerical network ITV on Sunday.

The unit surrendered itself to the British at the end of the war calling themselves the First Division of the Ukrainian National Army, and presented themselves as nationalists dedicated to the anti-Soviet cause.

Eventually members of the unit were accepted to settle in Britain - some 1,500 are still thought to remain.

Massacre

What the film reveals is that until just before their surrender the Ukrainian unit had been a division of the elite Nazi SS, the so-called Galicia Division, and had been used to suppress anti-German partisans in Poland and Slovakia.

The Polish war crimes body is particularly interested in an appalling massacre in the village of Huta Pieniacka, then in Poland but now in Ukraine, where in 1944 more than 600 villagers were murdered in reprisal for the deaths of two Ukrainians.

It says that it will be checking names, and could ask Britain to extradite anyone it thinks was responsible.

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See also:

27 Apr 99 | Europe
Ex-Gestapo officer on trial
02 Aug 98 | From Our Own Correspondent
Poland's unknown death camp
01 Apr 99 | UK
Life for war criminal
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