KHARKOV, February 26. /ITAR-TASS/. There have been no clashed during the removal of a Russian flag from the flagstaff near the building of the municipal council in Kharkiv. Activists who were guarding the flag were persuaded by the authorities not to insist on the flag remaining there, Itar-Tas reports.
The flag of the city was then installed in its place.
No more than ten activists and passers-by remained near the building. Several police are guarding it.
Earlier in the day, a group of activists formed a ring around a flagstaff near the building, from which a Russian flag was flying. A flag of the European Union was earlier flying there, but during a meeting of the municipal council unidentified persons changed the European flag for the Russian.
Kharkov Mayor Gennady Kernes during the meeting ordered police to remove the Russian flag and then walked out into the street and tried to persuade those who gathered for a rally to remove the Russian flag.
He promised later that there would only be two flags, of Ukraine and of Kharkov, near the building of the municipal council and described the activists’ move as a “provocation” aimed at the “escalation of tension.