Irina Yarovaya
© ITAR-TASS/Sergey FadeichevIrina Yarovaya, chair of the Duma Security Committee
The Russian State Duma (lower house of parliament) said the Kiev authorities were committing war crimes and therefore must face a military tribunal.

"I think this is an organised criminal group that has been acting like this since the very beginning, committing war crimes. For these atrocities they must be brought to justice as war criminals and they must be tried by an international military tribunal," Irina Yarovaya, chair of the Duma Security Committee, said on Saturday, May 3.

She believes that any support for 'the self-proclaimed Kiev authorities who ordered the extermination of their own people means compliance in this mass killing of people".

Duma Deputy Speaker Sergei Neverov is convinced that "there is no justification" for what happened in Slavyansk, Kramatorsk and Odessa in Ukraine.

"It's awful that the unleashing of civil war Ukraine is supported by the West that in no time has forgotten human rights and democratic values, of which EU countries and the United States claimed to be the advocates. Now no one has any doubt as to who is sponsoring unrests in Ukraine and who sponsored them from the start," he said.

"I do hope quite sincerely that last night's tragedy will make those who support the illegitimate and criminal regime come to their senses although the chances of that are waning, judging from the reaction of Western politicians," Neverov said. "Instead of defending peaceful citizens of Ukraine, they are blocking Russian proposals in the U.N. Security Council, which are aimed at peaceful resolution of the issue. The West is conniving at the Ukrainian radicals and Nazi whose ideology is extermination. Apparently Europe has learnt no bitter lessons from last century."

Frants Klintsevich, deputy chair of the Duma Defence Committee, drew historical parallels with the current events in Ukraine.

"The European Union and America refuse to understand the explosive situation in Ukraine and do not want to figure out what is good and what is bad because they simply can't benefit from that. They want a civil war," he said.

Klintsevich recalled that "during the Great Patriotic War [1941-1945], SS battalions manned with Ukrainian nationalists commanded by fascists destroyed the village of Khatyn in Belarus, burning the elderly, women and children alive".

"Practically 70 years on, the decedents of those fascists did the same. They blocked people inside the Trade Union House and set it on fire," he said.

"Why does Europe support such atrocities?" the MP asked.

He stressed that all opposition parties in "enlightened Europe" and the whole world must know what "present-day fascists" did in Odessa.

Chairman of the State Duma Committee on CIS Affairs and Ties with Compatriots Leonid Slutsky said the bloodbath in Odessa on May 2 "completely destroys the Geneva accords and incites a civil war in Ukraine".

"What happened, especially the fire in the Trade Union House, reminds me of the Nazi crimes during World War II. This is a new Khatyn and Auschwitz," he said.

"Especially outrageous is the benevolent reaction of the West to the crimes committed by the Kiev authorities against their own people," he said, and stressed that "violence must be condemned and stopped".

Mikhail Starshinov, head of the inter-faction group for interaction between civil society institutions and law enforcement agencies, condemned the Ukrainian Interior Ministry's statement that the Trade Union House in Odessa had been set on fire by the activists who had seized it.

"By the degree of cynicism, this statement is beyond the good and the bad," he said. "This is yet another evidence that certain political forces in the world will stop at nothing in a bid to achieve their goals."

He stressed that Russia was trying to conduct a dialogue on the settlement of the situation in Ukraine at all levels, including the Foreign Ministry and parliament. "However our opponents remain deaf to reasonable proposals on how to de-escalate violence. As a result, innocent people died," Starshinov said, adding that "this scenario would have been unheard of two months ago".

Unrests erupted on Friday, May 2, with a mass fight started by football fans from Kharkov, Right Sector radicals and members of the so-called "Maidan self-defence" force from Kiev, who had decided to march along the streets of Odessa, thus provoking clashes with the supporters of Ukraine's federalisation. As a result, 46 people had been killed in the clashes and over 200 had requested medical attention.

The Ukrainian Interior Ministry said the building had been set on fire by the same people who had seized it. However this disagrees with the footage and eye-witness reports from the scene.