World

"Revolution" Widens In Kiev

The biggest protests since the 2004 Orange Revolution aren't about just about Russia any more. "You're never going to be 'I'm besieging Yanukovych with flares on a tractor' cool."

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KIEV, Ukraine — Hundreds of thousands of people swarmed through the Ukrainian capital of Kiev on Sunday as a pro-European Union protest movement warped into an all-out battle to unseat President Viktor Yanukovych.

The protests, which began last week, appeared to be dying down until riot police violently cleared a tent city on Kiev's Independence Square, known as the Maidan. This caption reads "Die, scumbag!"

Kiev had not seen crowds this large since 2004's Orange Revolution, when weeks of demonstrations on the Maidan cost Yanukovych the presidency.

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Protesters defied a court order banning protests on the Maidan and thronged the square to hear speeches from opposition politicians.

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Police simply ran away.

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Many tried to storm past riot police.

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Inside City Hall. Protesters sleeping, handing out food, wandering around. Anarchy in its purest form #Євромайдан

max seddon

@maxseddon

Inside City Hall. Protesters sleeping, handing out food, wandering around. Anarchy in its purest form #Євромайдан

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The dream: a westward turn and entry into the European Union, something Kiev's young protesters can get excited about.

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"Vitya," Russian President Vladimir Putin says, "two things." "What?" replies Yanukovych. "1. Great job breaking up #EuroMaidan," the hashtag for the protest, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev says. "2. Ukraine's not Russia, you're fucked."

But the word on everyone's lips here is "revolution."

Graffiti on a skip in #euromaidan Kiev

max seddon

@maxseddon

Graffiti on a skip in #euromaidan Kiev

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Max Seddon is a correspondent for BuzzFeed World based in Berlin. He has reported from Russia, Ukraine, Azerbaijan and across the ex-Soviet Union and Europe. His secure PGP fingerprint is 6642 80FB 4059 E3F7 BEBE 94A5 242A E424 92E0 7B71

Contact Max Seddon at max.seddon@buzzfeed.com.

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