Georgian division on Maidan will fight till the end

DSC_0006Among the many colorful tents of the protesters at Maidan, one stands out. It bears the Georgian flag on a high staff. Upon recognising our interest in the flag, men in camouflage suits immediately invite us in.

“Gamardjoba,” we greet them in Georgian. Inside are around ten men, but in total there are 28 Georgians constantly supporting Euromaidan in Kyiv at the moment. Some live in Ukraine, but even more have come from Georgia, such as a man of middle age that came from the Georgian city of Senaghe on January 27. “I wanted to see Euromaidan as it is,” – he says.

Other Georgians have been here from the very beginning. “We remember the support that Ukraine gave Georgia back in 2008,” – they explain. “We are here for Ukraine and will not go away until we have won,” – a man of approximately 30 years tells me, passing some walnuts that have been roasting on the furnace that keeps the protesters warm inside the tent.

The division is not part of the Sotnia self-defense squads but acts as an independent subdivision of Maidan, participating in all Euromaidan activities.

In 2008, activists in Ukraine showed their support for Georgia during the Georgia-Russia crisis by holding demonstrations. Ukrainian President at that time Viktor Yushchenko had come out strongly in support of Georgia at a rally in Tbilisi, helping to regulate the crisis.

Alya Shandra

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