Police in Kyiv dispersed only the opposition
A rally in support of President Yanukovych passes without obstruction while opposition actions were dispersed. The opposition claim that the police were brutal.
The party “For Ukraine”, in spite of a court ban, did begin a protest near the Ukraina Palace, however the police soon pushed them out. According to members of “For Ukraine” there were around 20 protesters, and several times more police officers who according to the protesters were rough in their treatment and did not show identification.
The Kyiv Administrative Court of Appeal banned protests by the opposition planned for outside the Palace to mark the President’s first 100 days in office. They claimed that the ban was in the interests of national security and said that the organizers had only notified them the day before which made it impossible to properly organize the holding of the actions.
One of the organizers of the protests, the rightwing party VO “Svoboda” believes that the ruling is a dangerous precedent for restrictions of civil liberties and violations of the Constitution. The leader of “For Ukraine” said that it showed that the regime was not able to cope with opposition thinking.
Requests were received several hours before the President’s speech to remove all advertisements from around the Ukraina Palace, while an hour before not only transport was restricted, but also pedestrian movement.
Freedom of speech and assembly in Ukraine were discussed on the eve of the 100 days in office in the US State Department with Ukraine’s temporary representative in that country. The US State Department commented that the recent contact between a representative of the SBU [Security Service] and the Rector of the Ukrainian Catholic University there were actions which could be seen as restricting fundamental freedoms.
From a report at