Igor Strelkov: mysterious Russian who led Ukraine rebels | Bangkok Post: news

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Igor Strelkov: mysterious Russian who led Ukraine rebels

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KIEV - An alleged Russian intelligence colonel with an obsession for reenacting historical battles, Igor Strelkov, who quit as a key rebel chief on Thursday, was a driving force behind the brutal pro-Moscow insurgency tearing apart east Ukraine. 

Igor Strelkov, the top military commander of the self-proclaimed "Donetsk People's Republic", delivers a press conference on July 28, 2014 in Donetsk

The Russian citizen -- whose real name is Igor Girkin -- is a fierce nationalist and Orthodox Christian believer who reportedly honed his skills fighting in conflicts from Bosnia to Moldova's breakaway territory of Transdniestr and Chechnya, before helping Moscow seize Ukraine's Crimea peninsula in March.

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