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KIEV, February 19. /TASS/. The police have refuted media reports about clashes with protesters in central Kiev, saying what is going on is mere provocation.
"These are not clashes. People want provocations, just for show," Yuri Zozulya, the chief of Kiev’s national police, told Public TV.
He said the protesters are following a certain scenario and the lawmakers who support them are "abusing" their status.
Initially, about a thousand of people gathered in Kiev’s central Independence Square, known as Maidan Nezalezhnosti, or simply Maidan, to honor the memory of those killed here in riots three years ago. Among those who came to the Maidan on Sunday were activists of the so-called volunteer battalions, or paramilitary groups, that organized blockade of coal supplies from Donbass on January 25. Later on, some 500 protesters marched to the presidential administration building demanding the authorities support the blockade of Donbass.
In the evening, the protesters tried to break through police cordons near the National Bank and the presidential administration building. Clashes with police were reported. Later on, the protesters returned to the Independence Square.