Independence Square in Kiev became the focal point of Ukraine’s wave of mass protest and civil unrest call ‘‘Euromaidan’’. It all started on the night of the 21st of November 2013 when President Victor Ianoukovytch decided not to sign a free trade agreement with the European Union, choosing instead to maintain close economic ties with its eastern neighbor, Russia. Only a few hours later, hundreds of thousands of Ukrainian protesters where taking over the Square and a number of important government buildings. After 3 month of protests, punctuated by brutal police crackdown and arbitrary arrests, Euromaidan grewn up into something far bigger than just an angry response to the fallen-through EU deal. It is now about ousting Ianoukovytch and his corrupt government; guiding Ukraine away from its relationship with Russia; and standing up for basic human rights to think freely and to act peacefully without the threat of punishment. But on February 18th, riot police moved to clear Kiev's Independence Square. With hundreds of riot police officers advancing from all sides, antigovernment protesters mounted a final desperate and seemingly doomed act of defiance, establishing a protective ring of fire around what remained of their all-but-conquered encampment.
The following reportage cover the period from 18th to 21th of February 2014 during the final peak of violence who marked a turning point of the anti-government demonstrations and led to Ianoukovytch fleeing Kiev and an interim government being installed.
Produced from 18th to 21th of February 2014 in Kiev, Ukraine
Publications : Le Monde, La Croix, AlJazeera English, Le Pèlerin, L’humanité Dimanche