About a thousand people are picketing the building of the presidential administration in Ukraine's Kiev
Viktor Yushchenko's followers continue blocking buildings of the presidential administration and the government in Kiev. The picketers created three live barriers near the presidential administration headquarters. The people are standing side by side, holding each other's hands and do not let anyone but journalists go through the lines. Before the picketers let reporters in, they carefully search them, looking for any provocative materials.
The number of Yushchenko's followers near the building of the presidential administration in Kiev makes up 200-250 people. Several hundreds of opposition followers blocked the doors to the building of the Cabinet of Ministers.
Members of the public resistance action near the building of the presidential administration enlarged the distance between themselves and special forces units (known as spetsnaz). The number of spetsnaz soldiers was cut to one hundred.
About a thousand people are picketing the building of the presidential administration in Ukraine's Kiev. They are standing behind unnumbered trucks loaded with sand. The trucks are decorated with symbols of the national opposition and banners in Yushchenko's support. Barriers between the picketers and the police are adorned with yellow and orange balloons and flowers.
Television screens have been put up near the blocked government headquarters to broadcast news reports about the tense situation in the post-Soviet republic. Thousands of Yushchenko's followers gathered on the Independence Square in Kiev. No serious incidents have been registered in the Ukrainian capital yet, news agencies report.
Ukrainian Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych said on Thursday that he had been unpleasantly surprised with statements released by certain foreign politicians regarding the current situation in Ukraine. “To be honest, I did not expect such statements. I have never thought that democratic countries may support illegal and anti-democratic actions,” Yanukovych was quoted as saying. The head of the Ukrainian government is certain that the problem should not be solved in the streets by means of a revolution. “This is an explicit deviation from democratic principles,” said he.
Polish President Aleksander Kwasniewski and EU foreign policy chief Javier Solana are expected to arrive in Ukraine to conduct negotiations to settle the political crisis. According to Kwasniewski, the Supreme Court of Ukraine is supposed to check elections results on the base of submitted complaints. If violations are proved, one should cancel election results in a region and recalculate the votes, the Polish leader thinks. The Central Electoral Committee of Ukraine will have to revise the final results. Kwasniewski added that the two sides of the conflict must give up the idea of solving the crisis in a forceful way. Finally, the two candidates must sit down and organize a round-table discussion for all Ukrainian political forces, the Polish leader suggests.
Foreign policy chief of the European Union, Javier Solana, is to visit Ukraine on Friday too. Solana plans to have a meeting with Ukrainian President Leonid Kuchma, Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych and opposition leader Viktor Yushchenko to discuss a diplomatic solution of the conflict in Ukraine.
Up to 16,000 military men of the Armed Forces of Ukraine have been entrapped near the towns of Severodonetsk and Lysichansk