A Telegram channel of the Wagner mercenaries has to block the emoji reactions because activists have apparently hijacked the function with Ukrainian symbols. Among other things, blue and yellow flags are now waving under martial posts.
Hackers and activists keep teasing the Russian invaders with humorous pinpricks that ridicule their propaganda. In a recent action, they force the admins of a Telegram channel of the Wagner mercenaries to block emoji reactions by placing pro-Ukrainian symbols there, which are multi-chosen.
Bellingcat journalist Christo Grosew posted a screenshot on Twitter with the Wagner admins explaining: "Our opponents miraculously replaced an emoji! As a result, reactions below posts are temporarily unavailable." The screenshot shows the emblem of the Azov regiment, which, having defended Mariupol, became a symbol of resistance to the invaders.
The Wagner mercenaries are apparently not the only "victims". Under Grozev's tweet, a user points to other Russian channels also peppered with pro-Ukrainian symbols. This includes a fun green emoji with a blue and yellow flag, but also the emblem of the Kraken Regiment, which was founded by Azov fighters.
It is not known who is behind the action. The best-known group of pro-Ukrainian internet activists is "NAFO", which humorously debunks Russian propaganda. On Twitter, members (fellas) can be identified by their avatars, which usually use an image of a Japanese Shiba Inu dog, also known online as the symbol of the fun cryptocurrency Dogecoin, among other things.
Among other things, the famous saying "what air defense is doing?" ("What is the air defense doing?"). It comes from a pro-Russian account's reaction to the explosions at airbases in Ukraine's occupied Crimea in August. Since then, NAFO fellas have used it to poke fun at the invaders' military ineptitude.