Voices of Ukraine Maidan Nezalezhnosti, Kyiv 08.07.2014 Photographs by Alex Cybriwsky
Photo: Alex Cybriwsky
Two heavily armed battalions of Ukrainian military troops (Kyiv 1 and Kyiv 2) and riot police (hundreds in total) attempted to “restore order” to Ukraine’s pro-democratic protest camp in the center of Kyiv this morning on Maidan Nezalezhnosti [Independence Square, called Maidan]. Their attempts failed after people pushed them back. Thankfully, the incident was mostly peaceful and few injuries were witnessed. However, government forces destroyed over 10 large protest tents with fire. Tires were also lit on fire by protesters who do not want to leave their encampments on Maidan.
Kyiv-2 Battalion [Klitschko's battalions are K1 & K2] member with automatic rifle who came with hundreds of other men to disassemble the Maidan protest camp. Photo: Alex Cybriwsky
Unidentified persons are reinforcing the barricades using wooden pallets and barbed wire which they are laying atop the tires. This is being done by a few dozen people in camouflage with sticks, presumably Maidaners. The faces of some of them are covered with balaclavas.
Eyewitnesses say that in the early hours of the morning they heard police were staging on Mykhailivska Square. Additionally, it was announced from the Maidan stage this afternoon that there is to be an attack tonight and a viche [rally] has been called which started at 7pm, Kyiv time.
Photo: Alex Cybriwsky
The perimeter of the tent city on Maidan Nezalezhnosti has decreased slightly again and now occupies the roadway of Khreschatyk Street from the Trade Unions Building to the Post Office. (Photos: Alex Cybriwsky. Click on images for slide show or to enlarge):
Maintenance crews removing the mobilization center of the Donbas Battalion:
Photo source: Spilno.tv screenshot
At the same time, Ukrainska Pravda reports that the head of the Security Service of Ukraine [SBU], Valentyn Nalyvaichenko, stated that saboteurs with a grenade launcher in a car with Russian plates were also detained on Maidan after the morning clashes.
“Two subversive groups were detained. The first one had grenades, and instead of helping the maintenance crews and the people of Maidan restore order, they were planning to make an act of sabotage against the civilians. The second one–was a vehicle with Russian license plates with a grenade launcher in it, which at the time was moving towards Maidan was detained,” Nalyvaichenko said.
He was not able to name the exact number of people in the subversive group with the grenades. Law enforcement officers detained the two subversive groups after the morning clashes on Maidan. The circumstances of the planned incidents are now being investigated in the course of interrogating the detainees, according to the head of the SBU.
“For the safety of the city and all citizens, it is really important that the maintenance crews can clear up at least the roadway, which will eliminate any opportunity to leave illegal items there and thus protect the people of Maidan and Kyiv residents,” Nalyvaichenko stated.