Ukrainian journalist beaten after criticising minister
A PROMINENT Ukrainian civic activist and journalist has been brutally beaten outside Kiev. It is the latest in a string of attacks on activists and opposition members amid weeks of protests calling for the ousting of President Viktor Yanukovych and his cabinet.
Hundreds of journalists and opposition activists gathered outside the Interior Ministry headquarters in Kiev, demanding the resignation of Interior Minister Vitali Zakharchenko after the attack on Tetyana Chernovil.
Some held pictures of Ms Chernovil, who has been one of the leaders of mass demonstrations that have rocked the Ukrainian capital for more than a month since Mr Yanukovych decided to scrap a deal with the EU in favour of forging stronger ties with Russia.
Ms Chernovil (34) has written for a number of pro-opposition news outlets.
She was driving home when her car was cornered by an SUV. When she tried to flee, she was beaten by several men, said her husband Mykola Berezovy.
The attack took place hours after she had published an article on a posh suburban residence she claimed was being built for Mr Zakharchenko.
The protesters have been demanding Mr Zakharchenko's resignation after a violent crackdown on a small rally last month left dozens injured.
They have also accused Mr Zakharchenko and other members of Mr Yanukovych's inner circle of profiting while other Ukrainians suffer.
Ms Chernovil unsuccessfully ran for parliament on the opposition ticket last year.
Mr Yanukovych condemned the attack and ordered a thorough investigation.
World boxing champion and opposition leader Vitali Klitschko has called for a nationwide boycott of the government.