Fascist paramilitaries behind Euromaidan coup ‘mobilise 10,000 fighters’ after stand-off with Ukrainian security forces
UKRAINIAN President Petro Poroshenko convened a “war cabinet” yesterday after neonazis mobilised 10,000 armed thugs and threatened to march on Kiev.
Right Sector militants set up checkpoints on the outskirts of the capital late on Sunday to prevent state reinforcements reaching the western town of Mukachevo, where some 20 Right Sector gunmen had been encircled by security since a gun battle on Saturday.
The neonazi group, which played a central role in the Euromaidan protests that led to the coup in Kiev against president Viktor Yanukovych, has issued a list of five demands. If they were not met, the group said, it would march on Kiev.
Spokesman Artem Skoropadsky claimed that Right Sector had many armed battalions in addition to the two fighting anti-fascist separatists in Ukraine’s eastern Donbass region.
“In the conflict zone we have two battalions, but we have 18 or 19 reserve battalions spread across Ukraine,” he told reporters in Kiev.
“They are training, they are getting prepared to be sent to the front.
“We can send all reserve battalions to the president’s administration and to the Ministry of Internal Affairs.”
An Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) special monitoring mission said it had seen a “Ukrainian armed forces convoy moving towards Mukachevo, comprised of 11 armoured personnel carriers, two trucks loaded with soldiers and one fuel truck.”
Reports came in on Sunday evening that most of the gunmen had broken out of the wood where they had been besieged, leaving behind two wounded men who surrendered.
“The armed members of the Right Sector will be found. At the moment their location is unknown,” said Zakarpatia regional Governor Vasily Gubal.
But Right Sector spokesman Andrey Sharaskin told Ukraine’s 112 TV channel that the group’s militias fighting eastern rebels had left their positions in Donetsk and returned to their bases.
Referring to “reserve battalions,” he claimed that “over 10,000 activists have been mobilised all across Ukraine.”
Right Sector rallies took place in 17 cities on -Sunday, as leader and MP Dmitry Yarosh called on his followers “to continue protests for an indefinite term until those guilty in the tragedy are arrested.”
“Our brothers acted within the framework of necessary defence,” he claimed.