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Police who beat up Ani Lorak protesters fired


Four Odessa police officers are reported to have been dismissed for beating up protesters outside a concert by the singer Ani Lorak in an Odessa night club on August 4. Anton Herashchenko, adviser to the interior minister announced at a press briefing on Monday that any officers who had used excessive force would be dismissed and would face prosecution.  He added that those found to have used force against police officers would also be held to answer. Four members of the public lodged complaints, he says, and one police officer was badly beaten, and around 8 not very badly. 

Herashchenko stressed that force might me need to maintain public control, but must not be excessive. He said that they don’t need sadists in the police force and pointed out that this was the policy of the minister, Arsen Avakov.   

The swift response is cheering, not, however, the behaviour of the police.  According to Oleg Martynenko, who monitors police observance of human rights, “in Odessa they beat people like they beat up students on Maidan on Nov 30 [2013] – savagely, frenetically and without any control”

The protest was organized by the Odessa EuroMaidan against the performance in Odessa of Ani Lorak because of her concerts in Russia.

Around 200 police officers are reported to have violently dispersed a group of around 100 protesters, using rubber batons.


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