Statements from Japan and Australia demand freedom for Bogdan Syrotiuk

Growing numbers of workers and young people in Australia and the broader region are joining the campaign to free imprisoned Ukrainian socialist Bogdan Syrotiuk.

Arrested on April 25 on bogus charges of treason and frame-up allegations of aiding Russia, Bogdan is in reality a courageous fighter for the interests of the working class. That includes opposing the US-NATO war against Russia from the standpoint of uniting Ukrainian and Russian workers against all the governments involved.

We urge all readers to support the campaign and demand Bogdan’s immediate release.



Scott, a New Zealand teacher living in Japan

Free Bogdan Syrotiuk! Ukraine has blocked access to the WSWS, a telling move by the fascist Zelensky regime that has fabricated “high treason” charges against Bogdan to silence opposition to their war. As the capitalist ruling class continues to use the working class as their pawns in war and in pursuit of corporate profits, the threat of nuclear war continues to grow. We must continue fighting against the capitalist ruling class and fighting for the immediate release of Bogdan.

Igor, a youth worker and actor from Melbourne

View post on Instagram

A student from Monash University in Melbourne

The arrest and detention of Bogdan Syrotiuk by the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) starkly illustrate the fascist tendencies entrenched in the Zelensky regime. This blatant frame-up, rife with lies and political absurdities, aims to suppress and criminalise genuine socialist opposition. Bogdan Syrotiuk, a committed leader of the Young Guard of Bolshevik-Leninists (YGBL), is being falsely accused of high treason—a charge devoid of any factual basis and rooted solely in his Marxist principles and opposition to the imperialist war in Ukraine.

The SBU’s accusations, built on dubious documents, attempt to paint the World Socialist Web Site (WSWS) and the International Committee of the Fourth International (ICFI) as instruments of Russian propaganda. This narrative is not only false but strategically constructed to delegitimise the socialist critique of both Ukrainian and Russian capitalist regimes. The ICFI’s stance against the US-NATO provocations and the Putin regime’s invasion of Ukraine stems from a profound understanding of the global capitalist crisis and the reactionary nature of nationalist wars. Only by fostering socialist revolution and the unity of the working class across national borders can we turn our backs on the state of endless war that serves bourgeois interests.

Historically, the bourgeois state has always employed repressive measures to silence revolutionary voices. The SBU's actions echo the suppression of previous socialist movements through brutal state repression. The arrest of Bogdan Syrotiuk marks a continuation of this reactionary tradition, aiming to dismantle any organized resistance to capitalist exploitation and war. The ICFI and WSWS, challenging the dominant Western narrative, have become prime targets for a capitalist class increasingly desperate to maintain its grip on power amidst growing economic and geopolitical crises.

In this context, the working class must rally to defend Bogdan Syrotiuk and all those who resist imperialist wars and capitalist oppression, regardless of whether these forces of oppression originate from Western or Russian bourgeois interests. The struggle for his release is intrinsically linked to the broader fight for socialism and the liberation of humanity from the chains of exploitation. It is imperative to mobilise global solidarity to expose and resist these fascistic tactics, ensuring the voices of the oppressed are not silenced. 

The defence of democratic rights and the fight for socialism are connected, and the case of Bogdan Syrotiuk underscores the urgent need for revolutionary internationalism in the face of escalating imperialist barbarism. As Rosa Luxemburg famously stated, humanity faces a stark choice: “Socialism or barbarism.”


Jenny, a retired worker in Sydney

I condemn the arrest of Bogdan Syrotiuk who, prior to his arrest, exercised his democratic right to alert the Ukrainian and Russian working class that their allegiance lay with their class brothers and sisters, not the warmongering oligarchs of their respective countries. He must immediately be released and restored to his family and friends. 

The program of uniting the international working class against imperialist war and for the overthrow of capitalism terrifies the leaders of Ukraine and Russia because it is their working-class men and women that they are mercilessly sending into battle against each other. What would Putin and Zelensky do if their soldiers downed arms? They are so sensitive to political currents which are increasingly anti-war, that Bogdan, aligned with the Fourth international founded by Leon Trotsky who led the momentous Russian Revolution of 1917, had to be silenced. They silenced him by locking him up, proving, contrary to the bugles of imperialism which claim Ukraine is fighting this war in the name of “democracy,” there is no democracy in Ukraine. Fascism is alive and well in the Zelensky regime.

Bogdan is a courageous and principled young man who consciously advocated socialist internationalism. He worked to clarify the Ukrainian war and other critical geopolitical issues to the Ukrainian and Russian workers. He did this in the middle of a vicious and ongoing trench and bombing war resembling a WWI hellscape. With serious health issues, it is imperative he be released from that Ukrainian prison post-haste! I encourage everyone to join the #FreeBogdan campaign.

Linda, a Sydney artist

The accusation by the Ukrainian government that Bogdan Syrotiuk and the World Socialist Web Site (WSWS) are working for Putin is patently absurd given the WSWS's well-documented and vehement opposition to both Putin and the Russian invasion of Ukraine. 

The WSWS, affiliated with the International Committee of the Fourth International (ICFI), has consistently denounced the Russian military intervention, condemning it as a reactionary move that exacerbates the plight of the working class. 

WSWS has repeatedly highlighted the reactionary nature of Putin’s regime, critiquing it for safeguarding the interests of the Russian oligarchy at the expense of the working class. This principled stance is in direct contradiction to the claims made by the Ukrainian government, which attempts to portray Syrotiuk and the WSWS as Kremlin propagandists, a narrative that collapses under the weight of the WSWS's clear and unwavering opposition to Russian nationalism and imperialism. 

Moreover, the Ukrainian government’s recent updates to its exemptions from the European Convention on Human Rights, justified by the ongoing war, further underscore the authoritarian context in which these accusations are made. These exemptions, which erode basic democratic rights, reflect a broader strategy to suppress dissent and opposition, making the persecution of Syrotiuk part of a larger pattern of repressive measures aimed at silencing socialist and anti-war voices.