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Local Protesters Acquitted in Maidan Event

Published: February 26, 2014 (Issue # 1799)



  • Artist Pyotr Pavlensky and a group of activists set tires alight in the city center on Sunday in support of Ukrainian protesters.
    Photo: Maxim Zmeyev

St. Petersburg artist Pyotr Pavlensky, charged with disorderly conduct following a protest in support of Ukrainian protests that he and a group of activists staged in central St. Petersburg on Feb. 23, has been acquitted, his legal representative Dinar Idrisov reported.

Dzerzhinsky District court judge Larisa Brazhnikova closed the case due to the lack of evidence after a 10-hour hearing late on Monday, Feb. 24.

Related: St. Petersburg Police Arrest Interferers in Pro-Maidan Rally

Pavlensky and a group of activists held a protest in support of the Ukrainian protesters by re-enacting a portion of the events at Maidan, as Kiev’s central Independence Square is known. At about 7:30 a.m. Sunday, they raised both Ukrainian and black anarchist flags, set fire to about 50 car tires and began banging on sheets of metal.

Related: Maidan Protesters, For and Against, Meet on Field of Mars

Held on Maly Konyshenny Most, a bridge near the Church on the Spilled Blood in central St. Petersburg, the protest event was called “Freedom” and was organized to show solidarity with the Ukrainian protesters and urge social revolution.

“Burning tires, waving Ukrainian and black flags, and the rattle of blows on iron is a song of liberation and revolution,” the activists said Sunday in a statement posted on Avtonom.org, the website of Libertarian Communists.

“Maidan is spreading irreversibly and enters the heart of the Empire. The struggle against imperial chauvinism continues. We are fighting for freedom — yours and ours. On this day, when the state urges to celebrate the Defenders of the Fatherland Day, we call everybody to stand for the celebration of Maidan and in defence of their freedom. The bridges are burning and there is no way back.”

Further on in the statement, they warned Ukrainian protesters against nationalism and appealed to the Russian people, predicting a similar future for Russia.

“We face our own ‘Maidan,’ a more fearful and bloody one,” the activists said. “Putin will sacrifice even more people [than overthrown Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovich] to preserve his influence and not to be torn away from his oil feeding trough. Long live Freedom! Long live social revolution!”

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ALL ABOUT TOWN

Friday, Jan. 30 through Wednesday, Feb. 4



A retrospective of the films of Roman Polanski starts today at Loft-Project Etagi, 74 Ligovsky Prospekt, with a screening of ‘Repulsion’ at 7 p.m. and ‘Rosemary’s Baby’ at 9:15 p.m. The series runs through Feb. 4 and will include Polanski's eminently creepy ‘The Tenant,’ the cult comedy ‘The Fearless Vampire Killers’ and ‘Cul-de-sac’ among others. Tickets are 150-200 rubles and the complete schedule is available at www.vk.com/artpokaz/



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