The leaders of Maidan will mark its anniversary separately from the people

The leaders of Maidan will mark its anniversary separately from the people
For many participants of the last year’s protests this will be a sad holiday
Photo: Aleksey Solodunov

Today, Ukraine will officially mark the first anniversary of the start of EuroMaidan. The official program of the festive events was developed by the Ministry of Culture, but it does not include the attendance of the country’s leadership on Maidan Nezalezhnosti.

Urgent meeting

On Friday morning, the activists of last year’s protests will meet with President Petro Poroshenko at the Presidential Administration, spokesperson of the president Svyatoslav Tseholko told Capital. One of the EuroMaidan activists Valeriy Pekar says this is the third such meeting of public activists with Poroshenko over the period of his presidency. He also specified that he organized the two previous meetings, though he was not invited to the third one. “I don’t know anything about this meeting. I asked other activists of Maidan; nobody knows anything,” the activist told the publication.

At the same time, activist and future MP Ihor Lutsenko (Batkivshchyna) did receive an invitation to the meeting with the president. “I’m going to see the president at 10:45 am,” he said. Lutsenko confirmed that the meeting is being held on the occasion of Maidan’s anniversary. However, he was not told what will be discussed at the meeting. He said the invitations from the Presidential Administration started coming on Wednesday.

As a reminder, last week Poroshenko signed a decree on the celebration of Dignity and Freedom Day annually on November 21. Thus, the PA decided to officially celebrate the date of the beginning of the events on the Maidan. In addition to that, the head of the state reinstated celebration of the Orange Revolution, which prior to 2011 was celebrated as Freedom Day on November 22.

The official program of events on the occasion of Dignity Day was developed by the Ministry of Culture, which is headed by the master of ceremonies of Maidan 2004 and Maidan 2013 Yevhen Nyshchuk. According to the document, which Capital has a copy of, before meeting with EuroMaidan activists Poroshenko will participate in a ceremony of laying flowers to the symbolic monument of the Heavenly Hundred. He will attend the ceremony together with Premier Arseniy Yatsenyuk and Kyiv Mayor Vitaliy Klitschko. The country’s leadership has not planned any more official events on the occasion of the first anniversary of EuroMaidan.

Representatives of the Svoboda Party, who actively participated in the protests a year ago, will not participate in the official events either. “Nobody invited us. Everybody forgot that Svoboda was one of the key organizers of the Dignity Revolution and the only party that lost its people. After the Minsk protocols were signed, we have been gradually written off,” Svoboda member Yuriy Syrotyuk told Capital, adding that his fellow party members will come to Maidan. They also plan demonstrations around the country.

Politicians who participated in the EuroMaidan also plan to mark Maidan’s anniversary beyond the official events. “The events that happened a year ago were not official and I will spend them in an unofficial atmosphere: I will go to Maidan and post some photos from there,” said MP Oleksadnr Bryhynets. He is convinced that this day should have been brought to the official level, although it is too early to sum up the results of the past winter.


The Kyiv City State Administration received 18 applications for holding mass actions from November 21 to November 23. Tomorrow, the march of Maidan’s Self-Defense in the center of the city will be the major event. The traffic police even plans to block traffic for this event. In the evening, the traditional in the times of Maidan Narodne Viche (Popular Assembly) will be held with the support of the Ministry of Culture, which will end with a concert.

Head of the Press Service of the Ministry of Culture Yulia Datsenko told Capital that there will not be a stage on Maidan. The concert will resemble the first days of still students’ EuroMaidan under the Independence Monument with Culture Minister Nyshchuk as the master of ceremony. “We decided that now is not the time for celebrations. That is why there will be no stage. There will be minimum equipment at the foot of the Independence Monument. Members of the families of the Heavenly Hundred and artists, who were on Maidan from the very start, will perform there. These will be mostly acoustic performances. Politicians can attend, albeit as ordinary citizens. They will not give speeches,” said Datsenko.

The Main Department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs in Kyiv informed that the police will reinforce security measures with over 3,000 guards on duty. “For the time being, peaceful gatherings have been announced to honor the memory of those who died on Maidan and holding of cultural programs. I hope that everything will go peacefully,” said Head of the Press Service of the Kyiv Police Yulia Mustash. Meanwhile, a source in the State Security Service told Capital that the SBU increased the danger threshold fearing provocations on Friday and over the weekend.

At that, the KCSA accepted applications for mass actions over the following two days. The major one is planned for Sunday. The Council of Maidan Activists announced that the Narodne Viche would be attended by 100,000 people.

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