Jan 20, 2021
The Kharkiv Human Rights Protection Group (KHPG) reported, “Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has made yet another baffling appointment, this time naming Oleksandr Kuksa head of a department within the Security Service [SBU].
According to Advocacy Advisory Panel lawyers, representing Maidan victims or their families, Kuksa was deputy to Oleksandr Shcheholev, who is currently on trial, accused of having organized and carried out the storming of protesters on Maidan via the so-called ‘anti-terrorist operation’. The lawyers point out that Shcheholev’s own testimony suggests that Kuksa was directly involved in the events over which his former superior is facing charges.
During the Revolution of Dignity, as the Euromaidan protests are now known, Shcheholev was head of the Kyiv branch of the SBU and was directly in charge of the ‘anti-terrorist operation’ from 18 to 20 February 2014, the bloodiest days of Maidan. Kuksa at the time was the deputy head of the Kyiv and Kyiv Regional SBU, with his particular focus being ‘terrorism’.
The lawyers note that the prosecution has established and demonstrated in court that during the night in question, Shcheholev, together with Kuksa, were present in the office of the head of Kyiv police Valery Mazan. They were there with all the members of the SBU, Interior Ministry, Emergencies Ministry and prosecutor’s office needed to launch the ‘boomerang’ plan. This was a plan to totally clear Maidan and all the area around it of protesters, something that could only be done through force and inevitable bloodshed.
Very many of those involved in organizing the gunning down of protesters and other violent measures aimed at crushing Maidan are now in hiding, mostly in Russia where many, if not all, have received Russian citizenship.
With respect to both Tatarov and Kuksa, their positions under the regime of President Viktor Yanukovych should surely have meant they fall under the Law on Lustration, preventing them from holding government office. On the other hand, Zelenskyy has already changed the name of the Presidential Administration to Office of the President in order to bypass this law and enable his earlier appointment of Andriy Bohdan as Head of that Office, and the lustration law seems all but forgotten.”