16 Mar 2019 17:03

Ukrainian nationalists pelt police with toy pigs in central Kyiv

KYIV/POLTAVA. March 16 (Interfax) - Supporters of Ukrainian nationalist organizations have ended their Saturday rally in downtown Kyiv, during which they demanded prosecution of those involved in corruption and embezzling the funds allocated for national defense and security purposes.

When the demonstrators came up to the presidential administration building surrounded by a police cordon, they pelted them symbolically with toy pigs, an Interfax correspondent reported.

One the suspects in the journalistic inquiry into defense industry fraud, a former first deputy secretary of the National Security and Defense Council, Oleh Gladkovsky previously had the surname Svinarchuk.

Later parliamentarian Andriy Biletsky announced the end of the rally and plans to conduct another one next Saturday, since President Petro Poroshenko was ignoring the protestors' demands to punish corrupt officials.

On Saturday Poroshenko is visiting the Poltava region.

The activists were forming a column to send it from Kyiv to Poltava where police had beaten five of their fellow activists and took them to a police station on Saturday, Biletsky said.

Meanwhile, the Poltava regional police said that this afternoon a group of aggressively-minded youths had attempted to provoke a conflict with on-duty police officers in the square in front of Gogol Theater in the center of Poltava. "As a result of the provocation, one civilian was injured," the police said.

To prevent an escalation, the police "suppressed the [radical group's] unlawful activities." "Efforts are under way to establish their identities and the circumstances of such behavior," the police said.