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ODESSA, April 08. /ITAR-TASS/. Authorities in Ukraine’s major southern city of Odessa do not plan to step up the guarding of buildings of various state agencies and organizations, as they do not believe that the turbulent mass protests, which have taken place in Donetsk and other cities of eastern Ukraine in the past two days, could be echoed in any major way here, regional governor Vladimir Nemirovsky told reporters Monday. He was appointed head of the state regional administration of the vital port city by the incumbent authorities in Kiev.
“From the point of view of collaboration with the agencies of law and order, I’ll do everything that’s possible and even impossible, to rule out even the thoughts about repeating here the experience of eastern regions,” Nemirovsky said, adding that he was not going to step up security at public buildings.
Last week, he declared illegitimacy of a tent camp in the downtown area of the city where activists were gathering signatures for making Russian a second state language, decentralizing the state system and determining Ukraine’s external vector. Nemirovsky also promised “to plug all the channels of financing” of the mass actions of protest against usurpation of and political purges in the country.
n spite of threats on the part of the authorities and court bans, thousands of residents of Odessa, a city known for its centuries-old natural multiculturalism, gathered for a yet another in a chain of meetings that have become quite traditional. They carried the flags of Russia, Odessa and the USSR, as well as posters saying ‘Fascism Won’t Pass!’, ‘Referendum!’, ‘We’re Slavs, Russians Are Our Brothers!’, and ‘Give Us Back Russian TV Channels’.
Representatives of other cities and towns of the East and South of Ukraine - Donetsk, Yenakiyevo, Voznesensk, and Kharkov - who addressed the meeting leveled sharp criticism at the politicians standing at the helm of power in Kiev. Demands were made to release from jail the leader of the Narodnaya Alternativa (People’s Alternative), Anton Devidchenko, who had been arrested by the Ukrainian security services, and to stop persecution of other activists, who are charged with encroachments on Ukraine’s territorial integrity.
Last week, searches were done in the apartments of Valery Kaurov, the leader of the Yedinoye Otechestvo (United Fatherland) organization, regional legislator Alexei Albu, and the father superior of St Tatiana’s church, Oleg Moryak who chanted a special sermon at a meeting calling on society to maintain peace and concord. None of the newly accused was tracked down, however. The Ukrainian security service claims they are hiding away from investigators.