Jary, Riko

Jary, Riko [Ярий, Ріхард or Ріко; Jaryj, Rixard or Riko], b 14 April 1898 in Rjysion, Austria, d 20 May 1969 near Vienna, Austria. Journalist; military and political leader of mixed Ukrainian-Austrian background. In 1929 he became a founding member of the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists and treasurer of the Leadership of Ukrainian Nationalists. He served as the main contact between the Ukrainian Military Organization and OUN and the Abwehr (German military intelligence) and organized military and security training for Ukrainian nationalists. He headed the Ukrainian Press Service in Berlin. In March 1939, he arranged the delivery of arms by Germany to Ukrainian insurgents in Transcarpathia, and in 1939–40 he co-ordinated the assistance provided by the Abwehr to Ukrainian military formations. Jary initiated contacts between Stepan Bandera and the Abwehr in November 1940 and became a member of the OUN (Bandera faction). Saved once from arrest by the Gestapo by the intervention of the chief of German intelligence, Admiral W. Canaris, he was finally arrested in 1942 and held under house arrest from February 1943 in Semering near Vienna. After the Second World War, he lived in Austria. Jary’s role in the nationalist movement is the subject of some controversy; however, allegations that he and his wife Olly (née Spiegelvogel) co-operated with the Third Communist International and speculation that they were Bolshevik agents remain unsubstantiated.

Dmytro Zlepko

[This article originally appeared in the Encyclopedia of Ukraine, vol. 2 (1988).]

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