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ROSTOV-ON-DON, April 09 /ITAR-TASS/. Three Ukrainian nationals, activists of the Right Sector far-right movement, earlier detained in the southern Russian Rostov Region and Republic of Kalmykia, were deported from Russia on Wednesday, the Rostov regional department of the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) reported.
The department said the deportees were Vitaly Krivosheyev, born in 1987, Artyom Golovko, born in 1982 and Kirill Pilipenko, born in 1989.
“During questioning, they reported their contacts with representatives of the Ukrainian Security Service [SBU] who instructed them to make photographs of deployment sites of Russian armed forces military hardware and register cases of its maneuvers in regions bordering on Ukraine,” the department said.
The deported activists of the Right Sector were also instructed to study the social and political situation and establish contacts with representatives of Russian radical structures. Their activity was revealed before they were able to do harm to Russia’s security. They have been banned from entering Russia for up to five years.
Right Sector activists were reportedly involved in deadly clashes with police in Ukraine’s riots. On March 5, Russia’s Investigative Committee charged Right Sector leader Dmitry Yarosh with using media to make public calls for terrorist and extremist activity. A Moscow court sanctioned his arrest in absentia.
Months of anti-government protests, often violent, ended with a coup in Ukraine in February. The protests, dubbed “Euromaidan”, began when President Viktor Yanukovich decided in November 2013 to suspend the signing of an association agreement with the European Union in favor of closer ties with Russia.
Amid deadly riots that involved radicals, new people were brought to power in Kiev after Yanukovich had to leave Ukraine citing security concerns in February. Moscow does not recognize the new self-proclaimed Ukrainian authorities, who appear unable to restrain the activity of radicals and ultranationalists in the country.
Ukraine’s political crisis and Kiev’s ties with Moscow deteriorated further when the Republic of Crimea, where most residents are Russians, reunified with Russia on March 18 after a referendum two days earlier in which an overwhelming majority of Crimeans voted to secede from Ukraine and join the Russian Federation.