By Svetlana Rogovska
October 14 is the feast of Intercession and the last sessional working day of the Verkhovna Rada of the seventh convocation; it was also marked by skirmishes in the center of Kiev. Peaceful march for recognition of the Ukrainian Rebel Army ended in a slaughter as a result of which 15 militiamen and three civilians, including a journalist got wounded, 37 people were detained (most of them were released later). The militia opened a criminal case according to p. 4 Art. 296 of the Criminal code of Ukraine (hooliganism), and the president Petro Poroshenko called events in front of the Rada an unsuccessful attempt "to open the second front in Ukraine". Mass media called the recent skirmishes in the capital the largest ones since the Euromaidan and compared them to the storm of Bankovaya Street on December 1, 2013.
It is established that representatives of at least seven parties and movements participated in the demonstration in front of the parliament – Freedom, Right Sector, Committee of Release of Political Prisoners, Black Committee, Brotherhood, Syndicate, and Revenge. However, none of these organizations did not take the responsibility for the event and did not admit its participation in the skirmishes. GORDON listened to the representatives of all these organizations and tried to understand what had happened the day before yesterday; it also found out who previously unknown Revenge and Syndicate are and who stands behind them.
PARTICIPANTS AND REQUIREMENTS
According to Kiev’s militia, there were about 8 thousand people in front of the parliament on Tuesday, the majority of which were participants of the march of the Ukrainian Rebel Army organized by the Freedom party. The main requirement voiced by this part of protesters was to recognize the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists and the Ukrainian Rebel Army as a belligerent party in World War II (the parliament failed to put this question on the agenda seven times on October 14). Later Freedom members were joined by another column that was formed in Shevchenko Park around lunchtime. It included activists of the Committee of Release of Political Prisoners, Black Committee, Syndicate, and Revenge. Besides, according to the blogger and activist of the Right Sector Elena Belozerskaya, there were some members of her party and Brotherhood party in front of the Rada. At the same time, GORDON was told in the Brotherhood party that officially it did not participate in the action. "Maybe, there were our supporters but we did not take part officially," told Head of the Press Service of Brotherhood Vitaly Cherny.
According to the representative of Black Committee Bogdan Titsky (this civil initiative is remembered by sticking leaflets and drawing sketches with the picture of Viktor Yanukovych shot in the head under the previous regime), participants of the column formed in Shevchenko Park supported Freedom’s appeals to recognize the Ukrainian Rebel Army, but their main requirement was to rehabilitate political prisoners of the times of Yanukovych.
The question is about the bill on modification of final provisions of the law "On Application of Amnesty in Ukraine" (regarding full rehabilitation of political prisoners) drafted by four Freedom representatives registered on March 14, but still not included in the agenda. The document lists more than 100 surnames. Titsky, who is also on the list, said that in includes people who are still imprisoned, released by the amnesty but not rehabilitated, and even people who were killed in the anti-terrorist operation (ATO) zone. In particular, the text of the bill includes Adam Osmayev who is in the Odessa pre-trial detention center on suspicion of preparation of an attempt against Vladimir Putin, Oles Chernyak and Grigory Gulvichenko who are accused of murder of traffic police staff on the Bykovnya post this March, the activist of Trizub and the Right Sector Andrey Kozyubchik (Orest) who is suspected of firing on Khreshchatyk this March when some people were injured and who was eventually killed in Donbass on August 17.
"It was the last sessional working day of this Verkhovna Rada, therefore, we demanded that this bill should be at least submitted for consideration, and at best adopted. It did not occur which revolted protesters, and skirmishes began," Titsky declared to the GORDON edition .
It should be noted that according to conclusions of the Chief Scientific and Expert Department of the Parliament, adoption of this bill will not lead to rehabilitation of activists whose surnames are on the list. "Amnesty of the condemned is not his rehabilitation in principle. Rehabilitation of these persons is possible either by their unconditional release from criminal liability or the punishment, or by revision of the corresponding cases by Ukrainian courts and acquittal of the accused or the condemned," consider experts of the Department.
According to the militia, skirmishes near the Rada began at around 12.30 when a group of protesters started throwing smoke pots, stones and stun grenades into the parliament building. Besides, as the Ministry of Internal Affairs states, aggressive-minded protesters catapulted metal nuts at law enforcement officers, beat them with metal chains and threw grenades at them.
All representatives of parties and organizations who were present at the demonstrations, disproved participation of their members in the skirmishes. The first ones to do this right after the beating were Freedom, Right Sector and Brotherhood parties. Representatives of the Black Committee, Committee of Release of Political Prisoners, Revenge and Syndicate also reported in the comment for GORDON that they did not see their activists among the offenders.
"Our people were at this demonstration, but they did not take part in the skirmishes. They do not see any sense or need in it," said Titsky from the Black Committee. A similar statement was made by the leader of Syndicate Evgeny Chepelyansky (Krest), and Nikolay Kokhanivsky, coordinator of the Committee of Release of Political Prisoners and the battalion commander of voluntary battalion of the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (this battalion has no official status so far. – GORDON). “The fact that we organized this action (in Shevchenko Park. – GORDON) is true, the fact that we were on the march is true, the fact that we came in front of the Verkhovna Rada is true. But I did not see our fighters who would throw bricks or fight with the militia," Kokhanivsky said.
Any of the organizations interrogated by us did not accuse other participants of the nationalist movement of provoking the skirmishes. Thus, Titsky told that all the most active participants of the action were in balaclavas, therefore, it was not possible to recognize them, and Chepelyansky explained that the hottest events occurred 40 meters away from him. "We could not see who was shooting at whom. Someone was shooting, but who?" Chepelyansky emphasized.
The only person who named instigators of disorders is Belozerskaya from the Right Sector. "Who tried to storm? The youth who call themselves "Revenge" or "revanchists". Petards were thrown by guys who had black flags with a white skull on it. I asked what they were called, they say "ardiers" or something like that,” she wrote in the blog on LJ.
The Revenge rejects these charges. "Belozerskaya writes "ardiyers" (actually they call themselves arditi. – GORDON), it is nonsense, there is a mistake. Therefore, we can also assume that she could make a mistake when she wrote that Revenge began the storm," the representative of Revenge nicknamed Chornyi Patsyuk (Black Rat) told GORDON .
Arditi – assault divisions in the Italian army during World War I. After its termination part of the arditi (so-called Blackshirts) joined Benito Mussolini and became part of the fascist movement.
Right after the skirmishes, the adviser of the Minister of Internal Affairs of Ukraine Anton Gerashchenko reported that 50 participants of the skirmishes in front of the Rada were detained. Then the Ministry of Internal Affairs specified that there were 37 detainees. Last night it became known that 27 of them were released – administrative protocols under Art. 185 of the Administrative Code of Ukraine were initiated against them (malicious disobedience to the lawful order or the requirement of a militia officer, a member of a public or state border protection group, or a serviceman), the remaining 10 people remain in custody.
According to activists, the detention took place not during the skirmishes under the Verkhovna Radam but when the demonstration was already over, so even those who did not participate in the fight could fall into hands of the militia.
"People were detained not during the fight, but when everything was already over, when people were walking along Grushevskaya Street in a column. Theoretically, the militia could arrest any youth who seemed suspicious to them," Belozerskaya said to GORDON. This information was also confirmed by Chepelyansky from Syndicate.
"After the end of the action we were in Mariinsk park collecting things: we had a flag, so we were packing it. At this moment, there appeared a horde of people in the camouflage, sneakers, bullet-proof vests, helmets and with bludgeons in their hands," Chepelyansky said, emphasizing that he was stolen money and keys from the flat during detention. And member of the Freedom party, Deputy Head of Kiev Regional Council Yury Noyevoy said in his comment for GORDON that he personally was near the detained Syndicate members and saw that they were not throwing anything and were not fighting.
GORDON managed to find out that the militia detained five activists from Syndicate (Chepelyansky, Mikhail Strizhko, Stanislav Prudky, Boris Portny and Evgeny Stempkovsky; it was them who Noyevoy was speaking about), three people from the Black Committee (Taras Krivko, Yaroslav Vishnyak and Ewan Lola, the last two are under age, according to Titsky), two people from Revenge (Alexander Shakhovsky and Ivan Vegan). "Revanchists" and Chepelyansky were released later, others are still in custody (in the evening on October 15 there appeared information on the social network pages of the organizations that participated in the demonstration in front of the Rada that the militia allegedly used force against detainees).
At the same time, the Right Sector, Brotherhood, Committee of Release of Political Prisoners declared that there are no their activists among the detained.
The situation with Freedom members still looks ambiguous. On day of skirmishes, the People's Deputy from the Freedom party Igor Miroshnichenko reported on air of 112 TV channel that there were eight activists of his party among the detained, three of whom are members of the Aydar battalion. Miroshnichenko noted in his comment to GORDON that they as well as other participants of the action were detained near the Cabinet of Ministers rather than near the parliament. "150 bandits ran up to them, beat and tied them up. Though they had no relation to those provocations near the parliament. If only you saw them! They are real children. I have such an impression that the militia decided to detain at least something just to put a tick," Miroshnichenko said and specified that he knows about the release of at least seven of eight detainees. At the same time, the People's Deputy, Vice-Chairman of the Freedom party Yury Sirotyuk declared that detainees have no relation to his political force. "Perhaps, they participated in the march. But the majority of them are minors who cannot be members of our party," he said.
The militia refused to disclose surnames and party belonging of the detainees. "The militia does not reveal this information yet because it will be used for political purposes," the adviser of the Minister of Internal Affairs Gerashchenko said....
The full text of the article is on the Russian version of the GORDON web-site .