The Russian embassy in UK posted on X that Ukraine was issuing stamps with the face of Yaroslav Hunka, who received a standing ovation in the Canadian Parliament before it was revealed he served in a Nazi unit during the Second World War. Euronews fact-checked these claims.
A standing ovation during Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s visit to Canada’s House of Commons for a Nazi veteran caused anger and disbelief across the globe while fuelling the launch of a disinformation campaign by the Kremlin.
On 26 September, the Russian embassy in the UK posted on X that Ukraine was issuing stamps with the face of Yaroslav Hunka with the inscription "Hero of Ukraine."
In the background, we can see Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensyy and his wife Olena.
The 98-year-old veteran was invited by the speaker of Canada’s House of Commons, Anthony Rota, who claimed to have been unaware of Hunka’s past: he served in the 14th Waffen Division, a Nazi unit made up mostly of Ukrainian volunteers, during World War II.
Anthony Rota subsequently apologised and resigned for calling Hunka a "Ukrainian hero." Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau also apologised on September 27th
One of the main propaganda narratives pushed by Russia since its February 2022 invasion of Ukraine is that it is engaged in 'de-Nazifying' Ukraine.
The now-deleted Russian embassy tweet gained more than 500,000 views with many users expressing their outrage or disbelief.
"Ukraine, on the other hand, has no intention of stopping and is increasingly and openly pushing and glorifying Nazism," claimed one X account.
The stamp turned out to be fake
In order to verify whether this stamp even exists, The Cube analysed the barcode on the top right corner.
By searching the barcode, we found it actually refers to a completely different product: war-time envelopes and stamps issued in 2022 for Ukraine, more than a year before the Yaroslav Hunka controversy.
When looking up the same barcode on the Ukrainian Postal Service website, we found the same 2022 stamps.
The controversial Nazi stamp was nowhere to be found after we searched for it on the official website. The list of recently released stamps did not include one with Hunka on it.
According to the Postal Service’s latest press release, there will be new stamps released showing Western weapons, not one particular person.
This means this viral stamp is fake and has never been released by the Ukrainian Postal service.