Thousands of supporters of Russia storm the offices of the prosecutor and governor in the eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk. As CCTV’s Jack Barton reports, a large pro-Moscow rally began as Ukrainian army tanks rolled along the road just south of the city on their way to cut off the main highway between Crimea and Russia.
Using a pole, bearing a Russian flag, pro-Moscow demonstrators smash their way into the prosecutor’s office in Donetsk in eastern Ukraine. Colleagues, who have entered through a side door, help from the inside. They demand the release of their leader who is in custody on separatism charges. Then ransack the offices and fly the flag from the balcony.
These people, from the eastern region of Donbass, claim they are being discriminated against by Kiev.
“People have gathered to protest the humiliation of our accomplishments, of the Donbass people.” said a pro-Russia supporter.
And they want more than that.
The people clashing with the riot police support the referendum in Crimea and that they now want their own referendum on joining Russia.
After the prosecutor’s building, it was on to the governor’s office for a repeat performance. There are still plenty of people in this city who support a united Ukraine, but after Thursday night’s fatal clash – that left one pro-unity activist dead – they say they are too afraid to come out onto the street.
There’s no doubt supporters of Russia now feel they have the momentum here. “Donbass and Russia are one” shouts this man. The government in Kiev disagrees and on Sunday began moving military vehicles through Donbass only 40 kilometers south of Donetsk.
They are not heading to this city, but to a large coastal town in the south of the district situated on the main road between Crimea and the Russian border.
It appears to be a signal that Ukraine is prepared to use military force to protect its troubled eastern region.