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KIEV, November 22 /TASS/. Ukraine’s Chief Prosecutor Yuri Lutsenko has said that 35 people have been convicted in Ukraine on charges related to the Maidan protests from late 2013 to early 2014. Another 52 people are still awaiting verdicts on their cases, he added.
"I can say that a great deal of work has been done - 152 people are facing trial on charges issued by Ukraine’s Prosecutor General’s Office. Thirty-five people have been convicted, and pre-trial investigations have been launched against roughly 190 suspects," Lutsenko said in an interview aired by the ICTV television channel.
Ukraine’s chief prosecutor noted that "murderers" and not those "who had issued orders to kill peaceful civilians were in the dock."
In late 2013, anti-government riots broke out in downtown Kiev. The protesters who gathered at Ukraine’s Independence Square dubbed "Maidan Nezalezhnosti" accused then Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich of refusing to strike an association deal with the European Union. This sparked a mass protest, which has gone down in history as "Euromaidan" and lasted for several months. Ukrainian radicals set up tented camps at the square and seized several administrative buildings in central Kiev, forming armed units called "self-defense forces," which then declared open war on Ukraine’s law enforcement bodies.
More than 80 people lost their lives and hundreds were injured in clashes in Kiev on February 18-20, 2014. More than 20 injured later died in hospitals. Members of the Berkut special police unit who were accused of shooting protesters in central Kiev were among them.
In February 2016, Ukraine’s Prosecutor General’s Office said that it had established the identity of all those responsible for the Euromaidan events. The authorities in Kiev conducted a wave of arrests. In addition, the government then put about 20 Berkut policemen on a domestic wanted list. However, Interpol refused to include the Berkut cops on its list of internationally wanted fugitives.