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(en) ait russia: Protest demonstrations in Ukraine (second half of October 2021) [machine translation]
Thu, 18 Nov 2021 08:03:49 +0200
The second half of October was marked in Ukraine by new strikes of miners,
protests against the rise in prices for gas and housing and communal services,
youth and environmental protests. ---- MINER'S PROTESTS ---- y the end of
September, wage arrears in Ukraine reached 4 billion hryvnias, and the lion's
share of this amount is unpaid wages of miners. At the end of October, the
state's debt to miners amounted to 2.4 billion hryvnia . The situation led to a
wave of protests and strikes. With the help of speeches, industry workers managed
to knock out their money in parts several times.
So, on October 19, the miners of the Dobropolskaya and Almaznaya mines of the
Dobropolyeugol-Dobycha state enterprise staged a protest action in the Donetsk
region. The general director hid in his office and did not go out to the
strikers. The miners refused to start work and threatened to stop the shipment of
coal, demanding payment of salaries in the amount of 30 million hryvnias.
Immediately after that, they received $ 22.5 million.
However, the debt continued to accumulate. Labor collectives of the state-owned
enterprises "Lvivugol", "Dobropolyeugol" and "Mirnogradugol" sent an appeal to
the central authorities, warning them of their intention to hold protest actions.
Miners in the Lviv region demanded that their salaries be paid by October 29,
threatening with unregulated rallies and road closures. Dobropolyeugol workers
declared their readiness to hold an indefinite protest action. The local
organization of the Independent Trade Union of Miners (NPG) in Dobropolye and the
trade union organization of the Novodonetsk mine called on the authorities to
urgently pay off the debt. The organization NPG Mironograd (Donetsk region)
sought to pay workers 121.7 million hryvnia, threatening with protests at the
local and all-Ukrainian levels.
In "Lvovugol" the wage debt amounted to 400 million hryvnia. The labor collective
of the Stepnaya mine announced in the last days of October their intention to
hold a strike . The same decision was made by the miners of Chervonograd. On
November 1, the labor collective of the Lesnaya mine of Lvovuglya joined the
colleagues from the Stepnaya mine: from the 2nd shift, the work of the enterprise
was suspended .
The authorities again had to make partial concessions. On October 26, at a
meeting with the leadership of the Ukrugleprofsoyuz and heads of trade unions of
state coal mining enterprises, the Minister of Energy announced that on November
1, 671 million hryvnias were transferred to fully pay off the debts for July and
August, as well as pay salaries to miners for September. However, as stated in
NPG , government officials from the energy sector do not have an answer as soon
as possible to close the salary debt to miners in UAH 1.85 billion, how to ensure
the repayment of almost UAH 1.4 billion of promising debt for November and
December of this year, and how to ensure sustainable , safe work during 2022.
OTHER LABOR PROTESTS
In early October, in Kharkiv, on Samoletnaya Street, a former employee, who was
not paid by the owners for repairs, stole a gazelle with potatoes worth 28
thousand hryvnias from them. The sale of vegetables was used to pay off the wage
On October 19, a protest action was held by doctors in Kagarlyk (Kiev region).
The participants were outraged by the state underfunding of health care and
demanded timely payment of salaries and epidemic allowances
On October 27 in Kiev, bus drivers tried to block the street , protesting against
the new rules for the transportation of passengers on interregional and
international routes, along which drivers and passengers must have documents for
coronavirus vaccination or a PCR test. Drivers are fined 34 thousand hryvnias for
failure to comply with the new rules. The drivers continuously walked along the
pedestrian crossing near the stadium. Lobanovsky, blocking the passage, and
several times tried to block traffic, but the police pushed them back from the
crossing. As a result, a compromise was reached: for several minutes the drivers
walked along the crossing, and then for several minutes they gave the opportunity
to pass the transport (they reached a compromise with the police - for several
minutes they walk along the crossing, and then for several minutes they give the
opportunity to pass the transport
The main topic that continues to concern the population with the onset of autumn
is the problem of heating, gas supply and the rise in prices for these services.
GAS SUPPLY AND HEATING
Attempts by companies to impose new conditions and prices on consumers through
blackmail by cutting off the gas supply lead to real "gas wars". The events in
the Kharkov region can serve as a typical example.
After two protests with blocking the road to Rostov (for an hour every day),
Kharkovgaz resumed gas supplies to the village of Blagodatnoye, Chuguevsky
district, on October 17, which they turned off under the pretext of preparing for
the heating season. The protesters refer to the fact that the company
systematically conducts outages, and then imposes new, unfavorable terms of
delivery on consumers. Even the Security Service of Ukraine began to investigate
the situation. However, as emphasizesthe independent site "Assembly", "the return
of gas to Blagodatny and the punishment of those guilty of the conflict that has
arisen are only part of what was demanded near Kharkov at the weekend. Another
requirement is to create, instead of the tax, which is 95.5% in oligarchic hands
and independently determines prices for its services, a utility company to supply
energy to the population at fair prices. (...) Without organizing at the national
level, ways of overcoming the impasse are not visible, "the site comments, citing
the words of Kupyan's woman Marina Tkachenko, written on the page of the protest
organizer:" I think it's time to take the officials hostage. Keep it at home, let
it freeze and not feed. " As the site notes, "In any case, this is a new
precedent for the entire Slobozhanshchina, whether someone likes such steps or not.
In Zhytomyr on October 25, a rally of residents against the increase in gas and
heating prices escalated into an assault on the office of the Zhytomyrgaz
company. When no one came out to the protesters who had gathered outside the
building, they broke down the doors and burst into it. When they reached the
upper floors, they finally found the chairman of the board of the firm, who said
that his company did not set tariffs. He was forced to go down to the street and
give a report to the demonstrators, but the manager, having first agreed, then
disappeared. The rally participants signed a statement containing, among other
things, such requirements as stopping the growth of gas tariffs, a ban on
shutting off gas supplies during the heating season and returning gas networks to
the ownership of urban and territorial communities.
In the Chernivtsi region, residents of the Banilovskaya territorial community on
October 21 at a meeting delivered an ultimatum to the regional authorities: by
November 1, to resume the gas supply to four villages, which was cut off a year
and a half ago, or citizens will proceed to mass protests with the blocking of
roads of state importance.
In Poltava, on October 31, residents of the 109th microdistrict blocked the road
and temporarily stopped traffic due to the lack of heating in the apartments. In
the same region, in Lubny, on October 26, protesters against the increase in gas
tariffs blocked the Kiev-Kharkov highway , walking along a pedestrian crossing
with banners. They demanded not to increase the gas tariff and transfer the
Lubnygaz gas transmission networks to the city's ownership to create a communal
gas for industry will lead to exponential price increases for all goods. Of
course, people will take to the streets, because the streets will be warmer. The
way out is the nationalization of regional gas and gas transmission networks.
And, according to the Constitution of Ukraine, gas supplies for the population at
a cost price - UAH 1 per cubic meter. "
However, protests against the increase in tariffs for housing and communal
services are not limited to the "gas theme". Three actions in front of the
Verkhovna Rada in Kiev in recent weeks, organized by the "No Corruption"
movement, became a reminder of this . The participants, protesting against the
high prices for heating and hot water, demanded "to stop the tariff genocide."
In Odessa, displaced persons from the eastern regions of the country, living in a
dormitory on Uspenskaya Street and repaired it on their own, are holding protest
actions in front of the regional council, demanding to stop power outages and
conclude an agreement with them on payment of utility bills
October 30. About 500 residents of Volnyansk in the Zaporozhye region stormed an
unfinished kaolin quarry, the construction of which causes significant damage to
the region's ecology and human health. Having occupied the territory of the
quarry, they blocked the work of equipment and organized a rally. At the same
time, the employees of the security company were rebuffed.
In the last weekend of the month, residents of the Broshnev-Osad community and
the surrounding villages of Ivano-Frankivsk region staged a protest against the
harmful production of formaldehyde resins , which Swiss Krono intends to deploy.
27th October. A youth rally against the liquidation of the city center of youth
leisure was held near the city hall in Sumy . They called on the authorities to
abandon the plan for reorganizing and dividing the center.
29th of October. Students of the Kharkiv Polytechnic Institute went on strike,
demanding the transition to distance learning due to the outbreak of the
coronavirus epidemic, as well as the transfer of unvaccinated teachers to
distance teaching (instead of firing them). The administration demanded to stop
the action, threatening to force vaccinations and shutting off the water in the
hostel, but in the end gave up. From November 1, the institute was transferred to
For all our skepticism about the introduction of the remote education regime, we
cannot but agree with the opinion of the independent activist website "Assembly",
which noted the coherence of actions and self-organization as the key to the
success of the struggle. The events "clearly demonstrate the unity of interests
of students and teachers in the face of bureaucratic tyranny and disregard. If a
few months ago the Kharkiv academic environment was a place of downright total
groveling in front of the almighty authorities, then this fall the driving belts
of silence seem to have worn out a little. Let us now see how far this process
will go. (...) This is real self-government - and not the intrigues of the
hobbyist clans ... "
October 23. Activists and activists of the "Ecological Platform" in Lviv on the
day of the international " strike for climate " came out with posters in the city
center, recalling the connection between climate change and the current
industrial-capitalist way of doing business. During the action, they managed to
attract the attention of passers-by and explain the proposed alternative to them.
On October 28, anarchists / anarchists from the Black Banner group organized a
fireworks display on Zamkova Hill in Lviv on the day of Ukraine's liberation from
the Nazis during World War II.
October 31. Eco-anarchists and eco-anarchists, as well as sympathizers in Lviv,
distributed food and clothing to those in need.
The Kharkiv site "Assembly" timed the October release of its regular "Black List
of Kharkiv Employers" to the international week of struggle against non-payment
of wages, which was held at the initiative of the International Association of
Workers. At the same time, comrades came forward with exposing other abuses of
entrepreneurs, including forced vaccination by the management of private firms,
unsanitary conditions, poor working conditions, fines, etc.
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