Ukrainian Liberation Army

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Ukrainian Liberation Army
Ukrainian: Українське Визвольне Військо
German: Ukrainische Befreiungsarmee
Ukrainian Liberation Army
Active10 February 1943 – 15 April 1945
CountryNazi Germany Reichskommissariat Ukraine
Allegiance Nazi Germany
Branch German Army
EngagementsWorld War II
Mykhailo Omelianovych-Pavlenko
Petro Dyachenko
Insignia of the Ukrainian Liberation Army

The Ukrainian Liberation Army (Ukrainian: Українське Визвольне Військо, УВВ; Ukrainske Vyzvolne Viysko, UVV) was an umbrella organization created in 1943,[1] providing collective name for all Ukrainian units serving with the German Army during World War II.[2] A single formation by that name did not exist.[2] The designation was used by Ukrainian nationalists in reference to a number of companies and local Ostbataillonen of Hiwi volunteers desiring to free their own territories from the Soviet rule. They included enlisted Ukrainian prisoners of war (POWs) of the Red Army.[2] The core of the Liberation Army wearing the УВВ sleeve badge (right, since 1945) originated from the 14th Waffen Grenadier Division of the SS (1st Ukrainian) reorganized in April 1945 into the Ukrainian National Army (UNA) active until the German surrender in May 1945.[3]

Some UVV battalions deployed to France joined the French Resistance's Maquis guerrillas. The Ivan Bohun and Taras Shenvchenko battalions were later transferred to the French Foreign Legion in 1944.[4]


The Nazis estimated that there were 180,000 Ukrainian volunteers serving with units scattered all over Europe and proposed to merge them into a single force, the UVV.[5]

Headed by Ukrainian general Mykhailo Omelianovych-Pavlenko, the unit grew to 50,000 by 1944 and peaked at some 80,000 towards the end of the war.[6]

In April 1945, numerous remnants of the UVV were incorporated into the short-lived Ukrainian National Army commanded by general Pavlo Shandruk, disbanded in May 1945.[1]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Peter Abbott; Eugene Pinak (2012). Ukrainian Armies 1914–55. Bloomsbury Publishing. pp. 16, 47. ISBN 978-1780964034.
  2. ^ a b c Michael A. Dorosh (1999). "Ostruppen (Eastern Troops)". types of German formations during the Second World War. Retrieved 19 July 2014.
  3. ^ Marcus Wendel (29 Apr 2009). "14. Waffen-Grenadier-Division der SS (ukrainische Nr. 1). Lineage". Waffen-SS Units. Axis History Factbook. Archived from the original on 15 September 2018. Retrieved 10 August 2017 – via Internet Archive (April 30, 2009).
  4. ^ Abbott, Paul (2012). Ukrainian Armies 1914-55. Osprey Publishing Limited. p. 40.
  5. ^ Carlos Caballero Jurado (1983). Foreign Volunteers of the Wehrmacht 1941-45. Translated by Alfredo Campello, David List. Osprey. p. 29. ISBN 0850455243.
  6. ^ "Ukrainian Liberation Army (Ukrainske Vyzvolne Vijsko – UVV)". Archived from the original on 11 March 2014. Retrieved 17 February 2017.