Police under Scrutiny activist attacked – police under suspicion
Yevhen Krapyvin, activist for the Association of Ukrainian Human Rights Monitors on Law Enforcement was assaulted on 24 September. The Association, which is coordinating the nationwide monitoring campaign “Police under Scrutiny”, reports that there are serious grounds for believing that Yevhen’s assailant was a police officer in civilian clothes. It says that this is now for the police to ascertain since a criminal investigation has been initiated.
The incident was not only witnessed, but also videoed, by journalists from the TV channel Tonis who were with the activist filming a report on the work of the police. The video clip has been posted on YouTube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kICR2kAzS58
It shows quite clearly how Yevhen Krapyvin is talking with two uniformed special force Berkut officers in an underground subway. Another man in plain clothes looks on. When Kravyvin and his companion walk off, the man follows and hits out at Krapyvin. The Berkut officers ignored demands to stop the assailant and did absolutely nothing.
Yevhen says that the assailant had been talking in friendly fashion with the officers and he believes they know his identity. The video shows them hiding away in a police bus which shortly left the place.
Yevhen called the police on 102 who did, apparently, arrive fairly quickly. It remains to be seen what happens next since the video clip makes it very easy to identify the assailant.
Marina Tsapok from the Association points out that this is a classic example of why a system is needed enabling identification of each police officer. The Association is calling for a system as in other countries where officers wear sew-on badges identifying each individual separately.