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EU parliament picketed in support of Donetsk, Luhansk republics

July 24, 2014, 18:26 UTC+3 24 24/7
People from eastern Ukraine and refugees who left their country in the past few weeks participated in the picketing
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© AP Photo/ Mikhail Ivanchenko

BRUSSELS, July 24./ITAR-TASS/. A meeting was held in front of the EU parliament building in Brussels to express support for the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Luhansk peoples' republics while the parliament was discussing additional sanctions against Russia.

"A war is going on in the east of Ukraine, the main victims of which are civilians who die as a result of firing from the side of Ukrainian government forces. The genocide against people must be stopped," one of the rally organizers, an independent journalist from Odessa, Sergei Dyachuk, told ITAR-TASS.

Infographics Who fights in Ukraine Who fights in Ukraine
The political crisis in Ukraine led to the formation of many armed groups on its territory. Infographics by ITAR-TASS
The east of Ukraine exploded after the Odessa May 2 tragedy. Residents of Donetsk and Luhansk realized that their peaceful protests for the right to speak their native language in their homeland could be suppressed by pro-Kiev armed fighters at any moment, as it was in Odessa. It was the time when people began to take up arms to defend their cities," he said.

People from eastern Ukraine and refugees who left their country in the past few weeks participated in the picketing. They held posters with photos from the House of Trade Union fire site in Odessa and from the zone of fighting in Donetsk.

"I have left Makeyevka near Donetsk about three weeks ago when pro-government forces began massive artillery attacks and bombardments of cities. Stories spread by Ukrainian media that militia allegedly fired at cities are lies and ravings. I have many friends among militiamen. Almost all there 90% are local residents, first of all miners who defend their homes. Yes, there are people from Russia who have come to help us, but they number very few," a woman, Naina, participating in the meeting said. She left Ukraine in mid-July.

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