SLAVIANSK, Ukraine, April 24 (Reuters) – Ukrainian forces
clashed with pro-Russian militants as they closed in on the
separatist-held city of Slaviansk on Thursday, seizing rebel
checkpoints and setting up roadblocks as helicopters circled
Reuters journalists saw a Ukrainian detachment with five
armoured personnel carriers take over a checkpoint on a road
north of the city in late morning after it was abandoned by
separatists who set tyres alight to cover their retreat.
SLAVIANSK, Ukraine (Reuters) – Ukrainian forces clashed with pro-Russian militants as they closed in on the separatist-held city of Slaviansk on Thursday, seizing rebel checkpoints and setting up roadblocks as helicopters circled overhead.
Reuters journalists saw a Ukrainian military detachment with five armored personnel carriers take over a checkpoint on a road north of the city in late morning after it was abandoned by separatists who set tires alight to cover their retreat.
SLAVIANSK, Ukraine (Reuters) – At least two people were killed in a gunfight early on Sunday near a Ukrainian city controlled by pro-Russian separatists, testing an already fragile international accord that is supposed to defuse Ukraine’s armed stand-off.
Hours earlier, Ukraine’s Western-backed government in Kiev had declared a truce to coincide with the Easter religious holiday, giving international mediators an opportunity to try to persuade armed pro-Russian groups to disarm.
SLAVIANSK, Ukraine, April 12 (Reuters) – At least 15 armed
men seized police headquarters in the eastern Ukrainian city of
Slaviansk on Saturday, extending takeovers of public building by
pro-Russian militants who have been demanding autonomy from
Government buildings in two other Russian-speaking cities,
Donetsk and Luhansk, have been occupied by separatists since
last weekend, in what the new pro-Europe leadership in Kiev says
is part of a plan drawn up by the Kremlin to dismember Ukraine.
By Gleb Garanich
Let me introduce you to the famous open-air “Sweat Gym” composed of around 200 work-out machines assembled from scrap iron to train all muscles. It is laid out on an island in the Dnieper river off Kiev.
I am not a sports fan, only learning about this place by accident. I thought it could make an interesting story and so I went to take pictures of the “Sweat Gym”. I was so struck by the uncanny scene that unfolded in front of me, that for the first half an hour I slowly roamed and looked around as if examining rare exhibits in a museum. Unknown gear, machines, intricate contraptions, old chains, wheels and tires, parts of caterpillar tracks and simple chunks of rusty metal – with humans swarming amid it all.
By Gleb Garanich
Passing through a pedestrian subway in central Kiev about twenty years ago, I saw elderly people dancing. I stopped for a few moments and then proceeded on my route – I was 25 years old at the time and, frankly speaking, this story was of no interest to me.
By pure accident, I ended up in the same place one evening in early February, and all of a sudden I felt a completely different attitude to what was happening… I was no longer indifferent to the lives and destinies of these people. What makes some 200 people gather in this passway on weekends for twenty years and dance for four hours?
By Gleb Garanich
I have been shooting Femen protests for five years and the girls have become a real Ukrainian brand now, like Chernobyl, the Klitschko brothers, footballer Andriy Shevchenko and Chicken Kiev. Colleagues in the office were always jealous when we left to cover the protests and many of my acquaintances from abroad were willing to go and watch them. Before taking pictures of the girls’ regular lives outside the protests, I asked myself: what do I know about them? I only knew their names. The public has two ideas of them, “funny girls” or “damn prostitutes, I wonder who’s paying them”. I personally do not care if their actions are moral or immoral, wrong or right. They do not kill or steal or promise to make voters’ lives better. Shooting their protests is much more interesting than, say, covering a briefing by the prime minister. These girls at least appear honest. Who pays for that is a question for the Financial Times, not me.
I chose the three most prominent Femen activists, Oleksandra Shevchenko, Inna Shevchenko and Oksana Shachko, and decided to spend a few hours with each one on a regular day. Two problems I faced were a queue of foreign reporters waiting to meet them and the flu, which brought the girls down. But once they recovered, I paid them a visit.