On the anniversary of the 2014 coup d’etat in Kiev known as Maidan the former People’s Deputy of Ukraine Oleg Tsarev spoke to the journalist Aleksandr Chalenko about the events of that time. The following is the full text of the interview.
Explain, please, why politicians and political scientists are so concerned about the topic of the “Heavenly Hundred” or the Kiev snipers. After all, it seems that these are the affairs of the past? Why look back in the past if it is necessary to look forward?
“The matter is that the case of snipers is the cornerstone from which the entire ideological design of Maidan was built. This is the foundation. If it is destroyed, everything will crumble. How is everything that happened after February 21st 2014 explained in Kiev – the illegal coup, the rise in crime, the loss of territories, civil war, and a decrease in the standard of living? The Kiev apologists of Maidan say that Yanukovych committed a crime: he gave the order to shoot at people and that’s why there was no other exit than to take power. And whether it was lawful or not isn’t important. It is precisely for this reason that I consider returning to those events to be very important. To understand what actually happened and who was behind it.
At the heart of those two Maidans that I witnessed were crimes and lies. At the heart of the ‘orange’ Maidan there was the fictitious poisoning of Yushchenko. At the heart of the last one — the shooting of the ‘Heavenly Hundred‘. Yushchenko reached an agreement with Yanukovych – that the deception with his poisoning won’t be revealed – in exchange for supporting the latter at presidential elections. But concerning the case of snipers on Maidan, I am sure that it will be revealed. And in general there is nothing to reveal. It is just necessary to collect testimonies, proof, and photos and videos.
Those who can’t understand the logic of personnel appointments in Ukraine immediately after Maidan – pay attention to who appeared at the top of the pyramid of power. The people in power are those who are tied by blood among themselves. The blood of the killed police officers and protesters. We must together find out what happened back then on Maidan in order to remove criminals from power. Blood and ruin won’t stop in Ukraine as long as these people lead the country.
Remember how the events on Maidan developed. On February 20th 2014 ‘Berkut‘ stood around Maidan in a cordon. Snipers started shooting at police officers in order to provoke return fire. But from where could they have known that the authorities, despite everything, didn’t allow to distribute firearms and cartridges to police officers? About ten police officers died from sniper bullets, 10 times more were wounded, but there was practically no response towards unarmed protesters. ‘Berkut’, understanding that they were in an open space and won’t be able to suppress the fire of snipers, retreated. The goal of provoking the police into shooting at the protesters wasn’t achieved. So then the snipers start shooting at protesters. When protesters retreated towards Maidan in order to hide from bullets, Parubiy ordered them to go on the offensive. People again fell under bullets. Note that at this time the leaders of the Maidan were in the most convenient place to be shot — at the stage of Maidan. It was possible to shoot at them without limit. But no. Nobody shot at them.
The overwhelming number of the victims from Maidan were killed by sniper mercenaries. On the next day, on February 21st, Yanukovych agreed to all the demands of the West and opposition, thereby actually herding both the opposition and the West into a corner. Firstly, all the crimes committed on Maidan must be objectively investigated by an independent commission with the participation of representatives of Yanukovych, Europe, and the opposition of that time. It is possible to imagine the ‘enthusiasm’ of the West and the opposition if the case of snipers will be objectively investigated. Secondly, there will be elections. Lawful elections in which anyone can freely participate, and most importantly, Yanukovych. What wasn’t acceptable for the organisers of the coup was elections in accordance with to the Constitution and laws of Ukraine. It is precisely for this reason that the next day all agreements were crossed out, and the Presidential Administration was seized. At the next bifurcation point in the vector of historical development Ukraine, after having hesitated for a time, turned towards ruin, big blood, and civil war.”
How do you explain the videos shown in Kiev in which it is seen how policemen with yellow bands on their sleeves open fire?
“Yes. Everything is correct. The shooting at policemen started before 08:00, and ‘Berkut’ armed with firearms and with yellow bands were sent there at around 10:00 exclusively to suppress the fire of snipers.”
When did you understand for the first time that blood would be shed on Maidan?
“In January. Gene Sharp’s technology aimed at the non-forceful overthrow of the government in Ukraine started glitching because of the amorphism and indecision of the leader being overthrown. Sharp’s technology is when go to the street to protest, their authorities unfairly and cruelly disperse them, and this brings together even more people. After the New Year the protests started to subside. The leaders of the opposition wallowed in negotiations with Yanukovych. People were tired. They were fed up. It is precisely for this reason that the CIA sent employees to the country for the organisation of the forceful capture of power.
We shouldn’t forget about the risk that some leaders of Maidan can throw Maidan under the bus in exchange for money and other trinkets. Such negotiations were ongoing, and quite successfully too. I didn’t participate in them. But I knew about them. Imagine — the West spent so many forces and funds for the organisation of Maidan, and it can suddenly be thrown under the bus?”
Why did the SBU allow them to enter and didn’t stop the activity of foreign states on the territory of Ukraine?
“My understanding is that the SBU did what it could in the absence of the position of the first person. They didn’t allow those who they couldn’t allow. Remember: how much shouting there was when Shuster wasn’t allowed to enter the country. And when I turned to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and SBU with the list of political strategists that worked for Maidan? Remember, it was called Tsarev’s list. What shouting there was when the people who were included in it were made personas non grata. How much criticism I received back then, including from members of my party. Nevertheless, as far as I know, the SBU tried to perform its work, despite everything.
I will give an example. In January in Ukraine under the passport, under the surname Audrius Butkevičius arrives. I would like you to concentrate your attention on this person. The entrance to Ukraine was officially closed to Audrius Butkevičius because he was accused of commanding snipers who killing protesters in Vilnius in 1991 and in Kyrgyzstan in 2005, and also of managing PMCs in Georgia during the ‘Rose Revolution’.
But he nevertheless entered Ukraine. A high-ranking employee of the SBU lifted the ban imposed on Butkevičius, hiding it from his colleagues.”
You already spoke about this. By the way, what you just said is already on Wikipedia if one goes on the page of Audrius Butkevičius. There it is written — information according to Tsarev. But at the same time you don’t give the name of the SBU employee who lifted the ban on his entrance. Besides this, this entry is marked as unconfirmed information.
“Of course. Unconfirmed information! It is the General of the SBU Pyotr Shatkovsky. Until September 2013 he was the first deputy head of the SBU. After this he was in reserve, but with the preservation of his office and opportunities. When it was revealed who ensured Audrius’ crossing of the border, there was a big scandal in the SBU. And it could not be revealed. Immediately after Audrius had arrived it was found out that he visits the US Embassy and holds some meetings with Turchynov and Nalivaychenko.
As far as I know, the General was discharged from his job. Many employees of the SBU knew about this event. But the new authorities quickly corrected this. The Maidan press couldn’t understand in any way why a General of the SBU working with Yanukovych was dismissed only in January, 2015.
The answer is simple.
I come back to the topic of help coming to Maidan from abroad. People with military skills came to Ukraine to replace political strategists, such as Marko Ivkovic – the organiser of the revolution in Yugoslavia. Besides the Georgians that the Italians made a film about, experts from Poland, Australia, and the Baltics came to Ukraine. They started training firstly the leaders of the 100-men units of Maidan, and then the 100-men units themselves. They taught them how to work with cudgels, how to hold rank, and how to use incendiary cocktails. Americans brought experts who taught ours (pro-Maidan Ukrainians) to add some chemistry to Molotov cocktails so that the flame couldn’t be extinguished before it burns out by itself.”
You describe all of this, but by all accounts law enforcement bodies also knew about this. Why was nothing done?
“I will answer you. Yanukovych didn’t allow it. His immediate environment was against it. Imagine that it is winter, and it is unusually cold for Ukraine. At night people don’t disperse only for one reason – they heat themselves in captured buildings. Do you know how many times the question of disconnecting the water, heating, and electricity in the captured buildings was brought up? There was an attempt to close the metro coming out onto the Khreshchatyk. Nothing was achieved. Hailing immediately sounded from superiors – they said not to touch. The substation was sabotaged at the level of the ordinary staff of law enforcement structures – it was repaired in the shortest timeframe by the mayor of Kiev, who was a member of the Party of Regions.
The power supplying companies in Kiev belong to a Party of Regions member – an oligarch and partner and friend of Yanukovych.
Here, for example, a foreign expert was engaged in a laboratory where ‘molotov cocktails’ and explosives were being prepared. His name was Robert. Those who were on Maidan should remember him: a young guy, about 35-years-old, with a braid. The laboratory was located in garages. Our experts waited until Robert left the laboratory and blew it up.”
And they could’ve not waited until he left the laboratory?
“I don’t know about blowing him up, but they simply were obliged to detain and arrest him. How many guys burned back then (because of him)… But not in Ukraine and not with this government (was blowing him up possible). The hands of law enforcement officers were tied.
Then the laboratory was organised in one of the hotels near Maidan. In my opinion – Hotel Kazatsky. But after it was busted there too, it was transferred to the trade union building. By the way, ‘alpha’ members captured the trade union building because of the laboratory. During the capture protesters set it on fire, that’s why all the building became ablaze, because there were many combustible substances.”
As I was told back then, the cash of Maidan allegedly burned there. About $250 million.
“I don’t know exactly. Others say that it only allegedly burned in that fire, but that in reality it was stolen. This doesn’t matter. It is rather important for the organisers of Maidan where their money went to.”
Let’s return to the snipers. Do you remember how the first murders happened on Maidan?
“The first murders on Maidan were committed by the security service of Klitschko. I hope you remember who headed the security service of Klitschko? Valentin Nalyvaichenko. I think that many participants of Maidan remember how athletically-built people dressed in identical uniforms appeared on Maidan. These guys kept aloof and were subordinated to Zhan (Odintsov Evgeny) and Medved (Zhernovoy Anatoly). Medved is from Krivoy Rog. Zhan is a native of Sumy. After I gave Zhan and Medved’s names, Nikolay Dulsky carried out a quite good investigation — I recommend it.
There are still witnesses of who received information about the first victims among those who I named, and how they received it. You remember, the first who died were a Belarusian and an Armenian. The first sacral victims were chosen among non-ethnic Ukrainians in order to give the tragedy international status. Poor Sergey Nigoyan, his fate was decided by a video recording where he heartfeltly reads (Taras) Shevchenko’s verses. He ideally suited the role of a victim. His family lives in the village in my constituency of the Dnepropetrovsk region. I think that his parents should know who gave the order to murder their son, where he was killed, through what doors and corridors his body was carried. I would like them to learn this information from the media, so that I don’t have to tell them personally upon returning to Ukraine.
But we will return to the first person who died. The public resonance because of their death didn’t justify the hopes of the organisers of murders. The version of events of protesters – that they were shot by the police on Maidan, where all the cameras of the world were working, and that nobody photographed this moment – crept away like wet newspaper in hands. There were also the conclusions of a forensic medical examination and many other things. We shouldn’t forget about how many policemen at that time died and were wounded. Against this background the death of several protesters didn’t cause a resonance. I think that back then the organisers of Maidan suddenly realised that the victims must be mass in order to stir up society.”
Can you name those who organised the shooting of people on Maidan?
“To my understanding it is the US Embassy that was responsible for politically supporting Maidan. The CIA was responsible for the forcefulness.”
Who from the Americans in Ukraine was responsible for the aspect of forcefulness?
“This is not a secret – it was the official representative of the CIA in Ukraine and the 1st secretary of the US Embassy.
And so Turchynov, Parubiy, and Pashinsky had direct contact with the CIA, and, separately from them, Nalyvaichenko and his group directly worked for them. Also the training of the hundred-men units and the laboratory that was involved in explosives was under the CIA’s supervision.
I can’t pretend that I won’t miss out somebody. But it is well-known that Turchynov was the real administrator of Maidan. Parubiy and Pashinsky obeyed him.
And beneath Parubiy and Pashinsky there were those who directly opened fire — Parasyuk senior and junior with their fellow villager. The Lvov resident Ivan Bubenchik opened fire from a AK74 on ‘Berkut’ employees. Subsequently his testimonies were published in the media more than once. Parasyuk doesn’t hide that he opened fire. I was told this by my colleagues from the Verkhovna Rada. Moreover, either he says that he opened fire but wasn’t appreciated for this, or he says that he won’t sit in prison for all of them, and that if something happens he won’t throw everyone under the bus.
Also the youth from ‘Svoboda‘ took part in the shooting. Later, on the foundations of it, ‘C14‘ was formed, on whose hands today there are not only murders on Maidan, but also the punishment and murders of political opponents of the regime after Maidan.
There were also foreigners. Georgians, Balts, etc. Many of them have since admitted what they did.”
We all speak about the capital. Tell me please: all the anti-governmental activity was concentrated in Kiev? Regions didn’t participate in protests?
“It is difficult to me to speak for the entire country, but Chechens came to Dnepropetrovsk – where I am from – during Maidan. Dudaev’s supporters. They didn’t stay there for long. Their leadership, seven people – one woman and six men – stayed at the ‘Astoriya’ hotel belonging to Kolomoisky. They moved in two jeeps belonging to Privatbank. The woman skilfully avoided outdoor surveillance. For example, she entered a shop, she changed her clothes, and left dressed as a completely different person. The rest of the group, about 150 people, stayed on the territory of the training ground in Novomoskovsk. After Dnepropetrovsk, this group left for Maidan, and after Maidan it participated in the ATO.
It is possible to say nevertheless that the primary protest activity was concentrated in the capital. In Western Ukraine administrations were blocked, but it was not a defining thing.”
Apparently, Lutsenko doesn’t want to investigate the case of snipers. Tell me, is there still a chance to investigate this case? After all, many witnesses are already not alive anymore. A lot of proof was destroyed.
“It is easy to investigate. There is just a need for a change of government. Look, it’s not a coincidence that Turchynov was made the No. 1 before Poroshenko in Ukraine. His task was to cover the tracks. Now he is also in power. He leads the National Security and Defense Council, for which its powers were deliberately widened. Parubiy is the head of the Verkhovna Rada. Nalivaychenko became the head of the SBU after Maidan. This list can go on and on. People connected by blood (murder) lead the country.
It is necessary to interrogate the staff of law enforcement departments who worked on Maidan, who filmed and documented everything. Some of them left Ukraine. Some remained. There were many employees who worked under cover. I am sure that they have things to describe.
I know for sure that on Maidan there were people to who it was suggested to organise groups of snipers, and there were those to who it was suggested to become snipers. I know those who refused. They refused despite the fact that by doing this they risked being included in the ranks of the ‘Heavenly Hundred’. I know those to who it was persistently suggested to open fire on their own. I won’t tell their names now, but should the need arise they can be interrogated.
It will be necessary to ask the head of the health service of Maidan and nowadays head of the Healthcare Committee Bogomolets who confiscated from her the bullets she collected from the dead and wounded;
to ask the city hall of Kiev who issued the order to saw the chestnut trees on the Khreshchatyk;
to interrogate employees of the Interior Ministry and prosecutor’s offices, those who started carrying out an investigation into the shootings on Maidan and recorded the facts specifying where the shooting came from, from what types of weapons, and who later confiscated these materials from them in order to destroy them;
to investigate the statement that the weapons of ‘Berkut’ that opened fire on Maidan were allegedly found. Remember – there was such a statement that was later bashfully forgotten;
to interrogate experts who forced the rewriting and adjustment of examinations to the official version of events concerning the killed and wounded;
to communicate with the fighters of ‘White Hammer’ who wanted to detain snipers and who Parubiy didn’t allow to enter the building of Hotel Ukraine by pointing guns at them.
Chestnut trees in the center of Kiev were cut down in Kiev so that proof of where the snipers opened fire from disappeared. But it is possible to interrogate the employees of the city hall concerning who gave the command to saw the trees.
I think that we shouldn’t shelve the case. We must collect testimonies and proof of crimes committed on Maidan without waiting for the government in Kiev to be replaced.”
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