Students calling for Tabachnyk’s removal complain of pressure


Students are indignant over what they say is pressure from the police, as well as the management of academic institutes, on young people who are calling for Dmytro Tabachnyk to be removed from his position as Minister of Education and Science.

This was announced at a press conference on Friday by Olena Frankivska, Chair of the Public Council attached to the Ministry of Education.

“Whatever the old Ministry of Education was like, then everybody had the right to come out and burn an effigy, everybody had the right to express their views. The present situation differs in that you can say what you think, but there’s no guarantee that tomorrow you won’t end up in prison”.

In the light of this, the student campaign “Tabachnyk – out!” has written an appeal to deans of institutes which was released at the press conference, calling for an end to pressure on students, including those protesting about Mr Tabachnyk’s position as Minister of Education.

“We students are asking you at this difficult time to show us support. We call on you to publicly guarantee the student community that you will not put pressure on students of your institutes who express their civic stand regarding the removal of Dmytro Tabachnyk from his position as Minister of Education and Science”.

The statement speaks of students being called in to see deans who show them as yet unsigned decrees to have them expelled and threaten them with problems.

During the press conference each of the members of the campaign present threw a white left-hand glove on the table, symbolizing that they challenge Mr Tabachnyk to a duel.

Olena Frankivska stressed that the students would continue their protest acts until a decision was taken to remove the present Minister of Education.  She also pointed out that the campaign “Tabachnyk – out!” had been mainly organized by students in the East and South of Ukraine, but had “now expanded to cover the whole country”.

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