Kyiv: Tanks and Russian military vehicles are seen frequently on the roads of Ukraine. Since Russia has called a full-scale invasion of Ukraine, these vehicles have been moving around Kyiv & several other Ukrainian cities sporting a “Z” marking painted on their sides.
Social media is showing images of the white emblem, stylized in a thick brushstroke. Many protestors, specifically those supporting Russia, have been found wearing them on t-shirts too.
What does the ‘Z’ symbol mean?
As per the Galina Starovoitova Fellow Kamil Galeev, “Z” is a letter the Russian military is putting on their vehicles departing to Ukraine. “Some interpret “Z” as “Za pobedy” (for victory). Others- as “Zapad” (West),” the scholar stated on Twitter.
The symbol got invented just a few days ago became a sign of a new Russian ideology and national identity, he said.
The symbol has gained heavy support from the public as many Russian civilians and business owners are putting “Z” on their cars without being compelled.
Whereas, other observers stated that these signs acts to signal other Russian citizens to identify their own vehicles in the war zone and avoid friendly fire.
Back in February, Professor Michael Clarke, who is the former director of the defence think tank RUSI, said that these symbols display the location of a unit or vehicle.
Meanwhile, Russia announced new humanitarian corridors to send Ukrainians trapped under its bombardment, a move Kyiv immediately dismissed as an immoral stunt. Ukraine has alerted that Russia is trying to manipulate French President Macron and several other Western leaders by demanding evacuation routes leading into Russian or Belarusian territory.
At the same time, a Russian delegation has left for Belarus, where it is going to meet the Ukrainian delegation for negotiations for the third round of talks about ending hostilities, and coming to a conclusion.