Well dear readers, directly below this post you will find this as written by me two days ago.
The silence is quite deafening whilst the issue refuses, quite rightly, to leave the headlines.
The Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) has not asked the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) to provide any information about a Palestinian citizen, Dirar Abu Seesi, who disappeared in Ukraine last month.
“There have been no such requests from SBU,” Maxim Butkevich, a counselor with the UNHCR Ukrainian department, has told Interfax.
Earlier, SBU said it was planning to contact UNHCR on the issue in the absence of any information about Seesi’s alleged kidnapping.
On Feb. 18, Seesi, a 41-year-old chief operating officer of an electric power station in the Gaza Strip, reportedly boarded a Kyiv-bound train in Kharkiv and two hours later was taken off and driven in an unknown direction by two men who presented their SBU identification cards.
Seesi has a Ukrainian wife and six children. He spent 12 years in Gaza and was hoping to obtain Ukrainian citizenship.
On March 10, foreign media reported that Seesi was in an Israeli jail.
The UN has repeatedly voiced concern over Seesi’s mysterious disappearance.
Of course, it is quite possible that if it was Mossad who carried out this action, they were in possession of false SBU documents. After all they have allegedly used false British and Irish passports in recent years to carry out assassinations in Arabia. Anyone who has ever seen an SBU identification will be quite aware how easy they would be to fake, particularly when shown to a Palestinian on a train prior to removing him from said train.
Ukraine has a fairly large Jewish community, many of whom hold positions of influence. The ability to generate a convincing SBU identity wallet is not beyond them…..or anyone else to be honest.
However, given the SBU ranks are not always comprised of the sharpest tools in the box and are also chronically underpaid, certain members may be open to “incentives” to act in a particular way. It is quite possible that there was some involvement by genuine SBU officials unofficially.
The problem with this, is that it is impossible to know whether the higher echelons of the SBU would have necessarily known about it. It is a question of “official sanction” should the SBU actually have taken part….and then proving either official sanction or renegade actions by a few.
What seems clear is the Israeli participation given this gentleman currently sits in an Israeli jail. It defies belief that he put himself there willingly.
It would also, even with the Ukrainian slow moving administrative behemoth, be known to the SBU that a Ukrainian woman was married to this chap and he is the father of 6 citizens of Ukraine. No doubt he was “flagged” within the system. We can be quite certain the efficient Israeli machine will have informed Ukraine about this gentleman to some degree.
One wonders, aside from the UN legal issues, where this sits with the EHR laws Ukraine is also signed up to and has ratified. Given his family circumstances and ties with Ukraine, where does is sit in relation to Article 8?
The actual manner of his being “spirited away”, from a train running between two major Ukrainian cities causes me to raise an eyebrow. It is like kidnapping in front of a captive audience and hoping they were all looking the other way.
That would imply either gross incompetence or arrogance on the part of both the Israeli and Ukrainian secret services if the Ukrainians officially sanctioned the action. Whilst neither are short on arrogance, both do not suffer from such incompetence.
If Ukraine was officially unaware however, or even without any actual (nefarious or otherwise) involvement, arrogance and incompetence are irrelevant as long as this gentleman was “spirited out of Ukraine” before the alarm bells sounded. After all Israel has a great deal of experience in dealing with sovereign nations that get miffed at it.
However, as the above article makes clear, the Ukrainian SBU has not asked the UN for information on the occurrence as yet. One would expect that there would be a politician from the 450 in Ukraine wanting to score political points over this…..and yet there is silence.
That said, Ukraine may have embarked on a demarche with Israel over the matter and may well be awaiting the official Israeli response before approaching the UN. A case of keeping ones powder dry for now.
It may also be the case Israel and Ukraine are colluding in an effort to limit the damage before responding to the UN’s request for information relating to the circumstances.
One wonders if the Prime Minister of Ukraine will manage to raise the issue having arrived in Israel yesterday on other matters.
Anyway, the situation remains awkward for Ukraine whichever way you look at it and does not appear to be an issue that will go away quietly.
The eventual statement to the UN will be very interesting indeed.