Kyiv: Parliamentary sitting closed due to provocations at Ukraine’s Rada

There have been clashes between a group of unindentified persons and the Kyiv police at the entrance to the Verkhovna Rada building on Tuesday, reports.

Today, on the feast of the Intercession of Holy Virgin, activists of party ‘Svoboda’ (Freedom) picketed parliament demanding that it adopt a law on the recognition of the OUN [Organisation of Ukrainian Nationalists] and UPA [Ukrainian Insurgent Army] as participants in World War II.

Later about 200 people, wearing balaclavas and carrying the flags of the Right Sector organisation, threw a Molotov cocktail and smoke bombs at the Rada.

The group made an attempt to break into the parliament. A reinforcement of nearly a hundred policemen were sent; stones and firework were being thrown at them.The police forces pulled out their batons.
During the rally at the Verkhovna Rada unknown persons opened fire on the building, Censor.NET reports.

The information is also reported by MP Leonid Yemets: “The windows of the Parliament with bullet holes in them,” he wrote on his Facebook page.

Chairman of the Verkhovna Rada Oleksandr Turchynov has closed the parliament’s sitting on Tuesday ahead of its schedule, Interfax Ukraine reports.

Explaining the reasons for the decision to close the sitting, Turchynov said that provocateurs outside the Verkhovna Rada were trying to disrupt the plenary session.

The right-wing Svoboda Party has said it will not participate in any more meetings of parliament, unless there is voting on vital issues such as the imposition of martial law.
Svoboda leader Oleh Tiahnybok told journalists that the party had taken the decision to quit the Rada in protest at parliament’s failure to include on its agenda a vote on recognising the OUN and UPA nationalist organizations at the state level. He said he doubted the current parliament was capable of enacting the required legislation, or a law banning the communist ideology in Ukraine. Tiahnybok also called on Svoboda party activists rallying outside the parliament building in Kyiv to disperse. Svoboda activists had taken action against “provocateurs” who earlier threw smoke bombs at the parliament building, he said.

The Right Sector denies its organising provocations.

(UPD) 36 people are detained for actions at Ukraine’s parliament today, Unian reports.

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