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Protesters rally against Milan’s ‘Eyes of Mariupol’ Exhibition, decry glorification of Azov Battalion

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« Dozens of Protesters from the Communist party and other leftist groups, gathered on Saturday to oppose the street exhibition called ‘Eyes of Mariupol,’ and called on the Municipality Council of Milan to discontinue its sponsorship. They argue that the exhibition glorifies the ‘Azov battalion,’ which has been often accused of having connections to neo-Nazi ideology.
Footage shows protesters near the six photo panels on Via Dante, where the stories of Ukrainian Azov battalion members from Mariupol were displayed. They held banners that read, ‘Out of the war, Nazi, out of Milan, form history.’
For some, like Yuliana Serechenka, a Ukrainian visitor, the exhibition served as a reminder of an ongoing conflict.
“I am very happy that people are still talking about them. I would be even happier if nobody would forget them. More and more people would stop to understand that the war is not over yet,” said Yuliana Serechenka, a Ukrainian visitor.
She added that from her perspective, Azov Battalion members are not seen as ‘Nazis but as heroes.’
However, not everyone shared this sentiment. Matteo Prencipe, a protester, called upon the City of Milan to reconsider its patronage of the exhibition. He argued that the city should symbolise peace rather than endorsing a group having alleged connections to Nazism.
‘We think it is the right choice to emphasise the proposal to the symbolic value that Milan gives to peace, which is not the Nazism of the icy eyes of those who proclaim themselves white supremacists and heirs of the Nazi Bandera,’ he explained.
The Rifondazione Comunista party also raised concerns about the exhibition, saying that it featured images of soldiers in Azov Battalion uniforms, which they described as « an internationally recognized neo-Nazi formation. » »


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