UPA March, "prayer" for autocephaly, and the Intercession of the Theotokos: What happened during October 14th’s mass events in Ukraine

On October 14th in Ukraine a number of mass events in official celebration of Day of the defender and also a number of religious meetings took place, including with the participation of the president Petro Poroshenko. According to the National Police, more than 250,000 citizens took part in them. According to coordinators of the human rights platform "Uspishna Varta", who carried out observation, no gross violations of order or violations of the right to hold peaceful assemblies were recorded.

According to the deputy head of the National Police Aleksandr Fatsevich, more than 500 mass actions took place countrywide. All of them took place without gross violations of public order. About 9800 law enforcement officers ensured the safety of the participants of mass actions.

Earlier the Chief of Police of Kiev Andrey Krishchenko reported that the march of UPA nationalists from the park of Taras Shevchenko to European Square took place in the capital quietly, and about 15,000 people took part in a procession. According to the estimates of observers, 7,000-8,000 people participated in the nationalist march.

At the same time, in Kiev a number of incidents and attacks involving nationalist organisations were recorded.

Thus, in the afternoon of October 14th in Mariinsky Park representatives of the OUN nationalist organisation made an attempt to demolish the monument to the Soviet General Nikolay Vatutin, who liberated Kiev in 1943. During the OUN march clashes with the police at the monument to the January uprising were also recorded. The police pushed the nationalists away from the monument.

Near Independence Square participants of the event fought with police officers because of an attempt to establish a tent. The participants of the action said that they had agreed via Facebook to gather to celebrate the Day of the defender of Ukraine. The former mayor of Konotop Artem Semenikhin (at the end of summer the city council gave him a vote of no confidence) acted as the organizer. Activists tried to carry the tent to Independence Square, but tactical-quick response units confiscated it. As a result at the top of Mikhaylovskaya Street a skirmish took place.

At the Kiev-Pechersk Lavra, where believers had gathered to celebrate the Intercession of the Theotokos orthodox holiday, unknown persons attempted to stage a provocation. Law enforcement bodies detained a group of unknown persons and took them away to a police bus. According to eyewitnesses, the detainees weren’t wearing any insignia. The group came but was quickly neutralised and taken away by police officers. Law enforcement bodies didn’t report what they intended to provoke. According to police officers, some of the detainees said to law enforcement bodies that they are "seminarists". The group of 66 people was sent to regional police offices, where their documents were verified and they were sent home. The others remained in front of the entrance to the Lavra and were blocked off by special purpose police regiment troops.

In the evening of October 14th members of the nationalist organizations “C14” and "Tradition and Order" attacked a building in the Shevchenkovsky district of Kiev. In the building at 18/1 Ivan Franko Street the office of the “SDPU(o)” party, which was headed by Viktor Medvedchuk for many years, is located. The head of the “C14” public organisation Evgeny Karas reported about an attack on "Medvedchuk's office".

“Some unknown historians from ‘C14’ and ‘Tradition and Order’ reminded Medvedchuk about Stus and covering up the retention of Ukrainian prisoners by Putin," wrote Karas on his Facebook page.

In the video that he published it can be seen how young people in balaclavas threw stones and flares at the building. The capital’s police claim that by the time law enforcement bodies had arrived at the scene the "activists" had already disappeared. Medvedchuk’s organization "Ukrainian Choice" blamed "fascist swine" for the attack and also reproached the police for their inaction.

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