UARU
A Special Report On the Transport Blockade In Eastern Ukraine
20 March, 2017
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What You Need To Know:

Demobilized soldiers and veterans from the Donbas and Aidar volunteer battalions, threatened to block all railways leading into occupied areas of Ukraine if the authorities of the breakaway republics did not release 110 Ukrainian hostages. On December 26th, they announced the blockade;

Some Ukrainian MPs, like Semen Semenchenko and Volodymyr Parasiuk help to organize the economic blockade;

“Locals often come here and tell us were doing the right thing,” says a blockade participant in Bakhmut, Ukraine;

Security Service (SBU) forces dispersed the redoubt—the protected place of defense-- of the blockade at the “Kryviy Torets” station.

In December 2016, demobilized soldiers and veterans from the Donbas and Aidar volunteer battalions, threatened to block all railways leading into occupied areas of Ukraine if the authorities of the breakaway republics did not release 110 Ukrainian hostages. On December 26th, they announced the blockade.

Several Ukrainian MPs, including Semen Semenchenko and Volodymyr Parasiuk helped to organize the blockade.

“Some people think we blocked the roads too,” says one demobilized solider in Scherbynivka, Ukraine. “That is not true. Vehicles can pass freely here.”

On February 17, 2017, the Ukrainian energy sector announced a state of emergency. A rally in support of the blockade was held in the Kyiv city centre two days later, which ended with clashes on the Ukrainian capital’s main street Khreshchatyk.

Over the next 10 days, protests continued in in the Kryviy Torets region of Donbas. Protesters were attacked by ‘titushky’, however, law enforcement intervened and 37 people were arrested. Regional councils throughout Ukraine began to express their support for the blockade.

Authorities from the so-called ‘LPR’ and ‘DPR’ announced that, as of March 1st, all Ukrainian enterprises in the occupied territories will fall under the control of the self-proclaimed republics.

“Locals often come here and tell us were doing the right thing,” says another soldier in Bakhmut.

Two weeks later, Security Service (SBU) forces dispersed the redoubt—the protected place of defense--of the blockade at the “Kryviy Torets” station. The blockade participants were detained, their weapons were seized but they were released later that evening.

Watch Hromadske’s report on the transport blockade in Eastern Ukraine.