Ukrainian newspaper depicts Africans and Arabs as monkeys groping woman

A local newspaper in the western Ukrainian city of Ternopil illustrated its front-page story on Tuesday with a photomontage of monkeys groping a woman to depict African and Arab men who had allegedly gotten into a bar fight. Our Observer, a Congolese student living in Ternopil, tells us this has deeply upset African students at his university, who he says are frequently the target of racist attacks.
Nova Ternopil's article explains that police had to intervene after an African man and an Arab man got into a fight involving a woman at a local bar on the weekend. The headline reads, “Arabs and negroes fight over our prostitutes.” The photomontage shows two monkeys groping a white woman in the foreground. In the background, a group of black men are sitting around a table, having a drink. According to our Observer, the men pictured are students at a local university and had nothing to do with the alleged incident.
We have not yet been able to reach Nova Ternopil's editors for comment. As soon as we do, we will publish it here.
The men circled in red are local university students with no connection to the alleged fight, according to our Observer. Photo courtesy of Beckhs Love

“Ukrainian students reading the newspaper laughed at the picture”

Beckhs Love is a Congolese student studying agricultural technology at Ivan Puluj Technical University in Ternopil. He’s lived there for four years.
I was in class yesterday when the university’s foreign student advisor called and told me to come to his office as soon I could. When I got there, he asked me to close the door behind me. He showed me the newspaper. I couldn’t believe what I saw on the front page. I was shocked. First of all, why would a story about a bar fight be on the front page? You would think that would be reserved for real news.
He asked me if I recognized the men in the background of the photo. I did – I knew all of them; they are my fellow students. He told me that this was awful, but that it was a provocation, and asked me to talk to these students and ask them to stay calm. Because I speak better Ukrainian than most African students - of which there are about 300 at our university - I often act as a coordinator between the administration and the francophone students.
When I told the students in the picture about the article, they rushed out to the buy the newspaper. It was easy to find. It turned out the newspaper used an old photo of them for their montage – it was taken long before this fight allegedly took place. We have no idea how the newspaper got their hands on it.
“I really don’t know why they give visas to African students, since it’s clear they don’t want us here”
Back at the university, we saw other students, Ukrainians, reading the newspaper. I saw some of them laughing at the picture. I told them, “You think this is funny? You think this is normal? In a few months, Ukraine will be hosting the Euro 2012 football championship, which is going to attract lots of foreigners. You can’t act like you’re in a Soviet state anymore.”
I really don’t know why they even give visas to African students, since it’s clear they don’t want us here. I want parents back in Africa to know they should stop sending their children here. At university, we’re excluded. In my class, we African students always sit together – few Ukrainian students will speak to us.
“We live in fear”
Outside university, it’s even worse. I usually go straight home, because it’s dangerous to be out at night. Black people get insulted and assaulted all the time. We live in fear. Not long ago, I was coming back from the supermarket and a group of men just knocked me down and hit me over and over. They took off when I started to scream. There’s no point reporting it to the police – the first thing they always say when an African man walks through the door is, ‘We’re going to deport you.’
Racism is a reality of everyday life in Ukraine. I recently went to make some photocopies with a Ukrainian student. He asked the store owner for a stapler; he gave him use of it, free of charge. I went back by myself the next day; suddenly, I had to pay to use the stapler.
It’s hard for us to defend ourselves, because there’s a real language barrier for most of us. But I hope we will be able to get a meeting with the newspaper editor, so he can explain himself.”
Photo courtesy of Guy Germain



I don't agree with attacking people who are minding their own business and not hurting anyone. With that said, my guess is that the men in Ukraine don't want a bunch of African men moving into Ukraine and competing with them for Ukrainian women.


Of all places why would an AFRICAN want to study in UKRAINE? It that how bad mental slavery has gotten! #BringBackOurBrains

Reply to comment | The FRANCE 24 Observers

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What goes round comes

What goes round comes round!

I can't speak for Africans but Arabs should treat the South-Asians working in their countries with respect, dignity, courtesy and equality before they demand it for themselves in other countries.

In Arab countries westerners/white-people are treated like royalty whilst South-Asians are treated as sub-human, even paid less than their white and Arab counterparts for the same job...

...Yet when the Arabs come to the west people can't even tell them apart from South-Asians.

Yes, middle eastern

Yes, middle eastern countries, especially UAE have their own hierarchies. treated best to worst: Native arabs to the region (emiratis) > other arabs > whites / persians / afghans / coptic christian arabs > muslim blacks (somalis/sudanese) etc > indians/pakistanis > other blacks / filipinos.

It is unfortunately true, but it is clearly obvious, here in the western world that arabs and south asians are different. MOST of the time (not always) arabs are significantly lighter than south asians, they also often tend to have african hair a lot of the time. There is obviously quite a few darker arabs and quite a few lighter south asians though.

If the black man and the Arab

If the black man and the Arab hadn’t gotten in a fight there would have been no newspaper monkey depiction. They can just learn to behave. And they damn well should too, when they are visiting a foreign country.

I'm sure Ukrainian men engage

I'm sure Ukrainian men engage in bar fights and probably wouldn't ever make the front pages. So let's not get all self righteous

What if

What if the fighters were Ukrainians, would they had been in the front page of the newspaper?

article on beloved black guy in Kiev

Racism is a serious problem in Ukraine, though less than in Russia, partly through ignorance, partly inexperience with others in this 99% white country. The Rukrainians fought a 300 year war with the Turks, Tatars, and southern Moslems where they often were the losers- they say 3 million Ukrainians were shipped out as slaves from Feodosiya!! So dark people were the historical enemy of Slavs. But I wondered why blacks would come here at all when they got treated so badly, esp by militsia. That said, everybody was very friendly and open during the EURO 2012 games, and I wrote a column about being amazed at a Angolan-Ukrainian who seemed to be beloved by everyone.

Well i am a Pakistani

Well i am a Pakistani National (those who are unfamiliar with it should search on the map)...and was born and lived 18 years in an Arabic Country (i dont want to create tensions by using its name) before coming to Ukraine... i have lived enough with arabics and i can tell you one thing... they lack the ability to adapt in other countries where there is a different life style. About african people i cant say anything as i have never been there...
I am in Ukraine for 5 years in Lugansk region (the most backward city) where the population of foreigners is same as that of the locals...In these years, i never got racial attack (for your concern i look alot like arabic) and what i learned is one simple thing...if you wont disturb no one will disturb you... Here, people dont give a damn about others unless they are drunk...
so lets come about the topic...this so called news is published by a fueled dumb some ways he is a foreigner, i tell you i am about every second weekend in some cafes or clubs after the study burden to relax and i have seen how arabic and african guys behave with girls after drinking a mug of beer or two...they will disturb any girl who is in their range and finger them, if the boyfriends of these girls simply ask them to back away...they start jumping on them and start fighting...both africans and arabics, though they are bad in speaking russian or ukrainian ...they will always know russian abuses well and start their conversation in russian, with guys with such abusive words... this is not the case only found in clubs, but at bars and cafes also...In cafes or resturants, they speak loud (maybe they dont know but they do talk loudly) and shout when they have a cricitical conversation going on which results in the irritation of the other people sitting there (this is true)and thats why people use the term "monkeys" with arabic and african people...
now in general and in many ways, this editor showed his stupidity and i guess this press backed him alot more... they i guess were making fun of foreigners but forgot by this, they made fun of themselves and their country in front of the whole world... P.S i amnot a racist but the whole comment i have wriitten basically depend on my observations... and i am was also pissed when i saw this picture as this was the insult of every foreigner living in ukraine...and then i read what they stated their own women as... and thought OH those who dont respect their own women... how they can respect others?
Now i read a question from almost every racist kind of person about how white people are treated in arabic and african countries? my answer in arabic countries excluding iraq, syria... if you are a tourist or a will be respected and will be preferred above than the locals... and believe me the locals wont gonna mind this...because for these arabics you are as a guest (there is no difference if u are male or female, from Ukraine or from USA)... i never saw europeans girls ( as a tourist or worker) mistreated unless she is a prostitute (as in every county prostitutes are mistreated)... if you still dont agree then i bet U never went to any arabic country...