Russia invades Ukraine: Secret symbols seen in Ukraine point to escalation of violence

Collaborators. Infiltrators. Special forces agents. The signs of a secret war are springing up throughout Ukraine. And erasing them may be a matter of life and death.

Some look like everyday street work marks. Others are invisible except under UV light. Then there are the tiny key lights and radio beacons.

All are designed to guide Russian troops, drones and artillery operators to their targets.

Ukraine’s defence ministry has put out a warning to all citizens: Find them and remove them.

“City officials are urging citizens to immediately report tagged locations, submit photos to law enforcement, and report suspects who may be involved in tagging,” Kyiv Mayor Vitali Klitschko appealed this morning.

As Russian forces struggle to encircle the capital, secret symbols reportedly spring up everywhere.

Secret symbols are being seen in Ukraine. Residents are being urged to cover them with dirt. Photo / Twitter
Secret symbols are being seen in Ukraine. Residents are being urged to cover them with dirt. Photo / Twitter

“In Ukraine, in the capital in particular, the number of detected marks of saboteurs who leave directly on the streets and buildings of both residential buildings and businesses has increased,” Mayor Klitschko says. “Labels are placed to adjust the fire of the occupying forces of the Russian Federation.”

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He says Ukrainian collaborators have planted many. And that’s treason.

“The crime is punishable by imprisonment for a term of 12 to 15 years with or without confiscation of property.”

Secret symbols are being seen in Ukraine. Photo / Twitter
Secret symbols are being seen in Ukraine. Photo / Twitter

Signs and portents

Unfamiliar marks have been springing up on roads and trees.


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Spray-painted tags are being found on roofs.

Public landmarks are stained with invisible signs.

Hooded directional lights blink on high-rise buildings.

“It is believed that some signs have been painted to guide Russian bombers,” the Kyiv Independent news service reports.

Lights tuned to specific coloured frequencies can lead missiles and drones down safe “corridors” to avoid interception or obstacles – such as high-rise buildings. Others placed on the side of a road can indicate which vehicles should go where.

Such a move is vital in Russia’s fast-paced style of war. Getting lost slows things down. GPS signals are likely to be jammed. And radioing for help can attract enemy attention.

Other devices are more sinister. They act as homing beacons, allowing enemy weapons to pinpoint a specific target silently.

Ukraine authorities say small transmitters are appearing on significant intersections and infrastructure facilities.

Other markers appear to be small reflective tags. But their effect may be similar to that of an aircraft’s transponder – reflecting and amplifying any radar pulse that hits it to stand out among the clutter.

Call to arms

Police in the city of Lviv urged residents who owned blacklight or UV lights to use them to find fluorescent paint. These were “used by Russian agents who have infiltrated the city to direct missile strikes,” they said.

It’s a similar story in the capital.

Kyiv residents have been using social media to report suspicious activity. Footage of people appearing to place marker pins and UV signs is being circulated.

Ukrainian authorities have responded by imposing a brutal curfew on the city. Last night, any person on the streets after 5pm was assumed to be a hostile agent.

There are unconfirmed reports of “friendly fire” incidents against both civilians and military units.

Small reflective tags are being found around Ukraine. Photo / Twitter
Small reflective tags are being found around Ukraine. Photo / Twitter

Meanwhile, explosions continue to rock the capital as Russian forces shift tactics. An oil refinery has been hit and is burning fiercely on the city’s edge. Reports indicate airfields are again being targeted. Some 500 tanks are leading columns of Russian troops in a fresh assault on the city’s outskirts.

Such secret signs may also be a preparation for a ground assault.

Military analysts suggest some markers may be there to define lines of advance, strategic locations, civilian supporters – and “safe” routes to follow through the city streets.

Authorities are urging Ukrainian citizens to cover such markings with dirt or paint. Reflective tags are to be ripped off, and electronic beacons smashed.

Urban nightmare

The pressure is on for Moscow to achieve a quick victory. Days of unexpectedly high Ukrainian resistance is causing an unacceptably high cost in troop lives, morale and equipment.

And that, say some analysts, may mean Vladimir Putin has taken his gloves off.

Rippling explosions from barrages of rocket fire and cluster munitions are strobing Kyiv’s night sky. Seizing the capital remains the most likely way of ending the war fast.

“The city has gone into a defensive phase. Shots and explosions are ringing out in some neighbourhoods. Saboteurs have already entered Kyiv,” mayor Vitali Klitschko said yesterday.

Damage is seen on a large residential tower after it was hit in by a missile on February 26, 2022 in Kyiv, Ukraine. Photo / Getty
Damage is seen on a large residential tower after it was hit in by a missile on February 26, 2022 in Kyiv, Ukraine. Photo / Getty

Ukraine’s defence ministry called on Kyiv residents to “make Molotov cocktails, neutralise the occupier”.

Defence minister Oleksii Reznikov said 18,000 guns were to be handed out among the populace.

But residents are being told to stay inside to avoid being confused with infiltrators.

“Going outside is very dangerous now due to the approach of the enemy,” Kyiv’s city council said in a statement.

Ukrainian forces have destroyed city bridges and highway overpasses to slow the Russian advance. Special forces troops have been fighting for days to control the city’s Hostomel Airport in the city’s northeast.

Failure to secure the site caused Russia to abandon plans to fly in an invasion force on Friday.


  1. No words can describe the monstrous barbarism being inflicted on peaceful people in a beautiful city.
    God help Ukraine and protect her from savages.

    • I agree, Scradge. I first saw a tweet about this yesterday, and today I researched it a little more. This is just another hint about which dirty tricks the scummy mafiosi will use to defeat its “brothers”.

    • It looks like there is evidence now too that the evil runt used banned cluster bombs in Ukraine. That and bombing schools and hospitals so the Hague is taking an expedited look into charging him with war crimes. I would have thought there was enough evidence of that in Crimea but …

      • There has been more than enough to charge with war crimes in Crimea and Donbas. I wouldn’t hold my breath on the ICC as they have not been responsive so far. Hopefully, they will this time around.

What is your opinion?