Early on the morning of May 9, the day commemorating the victory against nazism in 1945, Ukrainian political leader and Chairman of the Progressive Socialist Party of Ukraine Natalia Vitrenko was held prisoner in her own apartment by regime-sanctioned neo-Nazi gangsters (National Corps, formerly Azov Batallion), threatening her physically and preventing her from leaving the apartment. The same happened to her deputy, Vladimir Marchenko, at his apartment.
In both cases, the police intervened after a long delay, and Azov-like graffitti was sprayed on the doors of the victims.
Such acts of violence to prevent the celebration of the victory over fascism, were in fact expected and were denounced by Natalia Vitrenko in an appeal dated May 4 to Chancellor Merkel and Presidents Poroshenko, Putin and Trump, as well as to other Ukrainian officials.
The PSPU has requested support actions to publicize these attacks, and continuing violation of freedom of speech, etc., in post-coup Ukraine. More is available on Vitrenko’s website.
Here follows the May 9 statement issued by Natalia and Vladimir Marchenko to President Poroshenko and other judicial officials:
“I have addressed you repeatedly, stating that the inaction of Ukrainian law enforcement agencies with regard to Ukrainian Nazis has created the conditions for them to carry out political harassment, vigilantism, and murder against journalists, political figures, and citizens of Ukraine, whose political views and values do not coincide with their Nazi ideology.
“There are countless examples, from the May 2, 2014 tragedy in Odessa to the murders of O. Buzyna, O. Kalashnikov, P. Sheremet, et al. The Ukrainian regime’s proclamations of the European values of freedom of speech, freedom for opposition activity, freedom of expression, and political pluralism, in reality have turned out to be empty words and false promises to cover up the monstrous reality, that the Ukrainian Nazis are out of control and are going unpunished, while law enforcement agencies do nothing to defend the rights and freedoms of Ukrainian citizens, including opposition politicians, under the Constitution and under [international] Conventions.
“On May 4, 2017, on the eve of the celebration of the Great Victory [in World War II], I personally wrote to you, demanding that you defend our rights and freedoms, and indeed our lives, from physical reprisals by the Nazis, whose threats had come out in the media, as I indicated in my Appeal. Despite my Appeal, once again the law enforcement agencies took no action.
“As a result, at 7:30 a.m. on May 9 my apartment doorbell began to ring, and demands to open the door were made by a group of people representing the “National Corps.” They demanded that I refrain from taking part in the day’s mass rallies and that I stop supporting the Russian world. The doorbell-ringing and threats by the Nazis were continuous. I called the police, who arrived after one hour and determined that offensive graffiti had been painted on the door of my apartment and that the Nazis were continuing to blockade it.
“At 8:00 a.m. on the same day a group of 15 armed men attacked my deputy, People’s Deputy of Ukraine of the 1st, 2nd and 3rd Convocations Vladimir Marchenko. First they blocked the driveway of the building where Marchenko lives with his family, and then they physically pushed aside the concierge, broke into the building, and went upstairs to Marchenko’s apartment. They began to ring the doorbell and demanded the door be opened, and then cut off the lights and started smashing the door and trying to break the lock. They spray-painted the door with some kind of poisonous paint, the smell from which (or from some kind of gas) got into the apartment. At that time, in addition to Vladimir Romanovich (Marchenko), his wife and daughter, also his two minor grandchildren were in the apartment, and were naturally terrified.
“Vladimir Marchenko had to call the police. After half an hour, one person arrived, who was absolutely incapable of dispersing the blockade, defending V. Marchenko’s family from Nazi threats and insults, or allowing freedom of movement for all the members of the family. Or did the police have no intention of doing those things?!
“I demand an immediate investigation of the acts of terror committed against me and Marchenko, and criminal prosecution of both the organizers of these depredations and those who carried them out. I demand the protection of our rights and freedoms, including security. Consider this statement of mine to be an official statement to the police from me personally and from Vladimir Romanovich Marchenko.”