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 "Riot control weapons were used against activists regardless of situation," - former Berkut fighter Shapovalov on Maidan executions

Former fighter of Kharkiv Berkut company Viktor Shapovalov told the details of crimes committed by Berkut soldiers against Maidan activists during events in Kyiv downtown in February 2014 during his trial in court.

Testimony of Shapovalov published by 5 TV channel stirred social reaction, Censor.NET reports.

Shapovalov, who is accused of illicit possession of weapons and abuse of power, had been detained for year and a half as of Oct. 3, 2016, when his case was heard in the Podilskyi district court of Kyiv.

The suspect has named personnel of Berkut who received Fort pump-action shotguns during February 2014 events: Bondarenko, Rak, Mishchenko, Voitenko, Bielov, Batskykh, Biletskyi, Kobets, Matsiura, Pavlenko, Robko, Shevchenko. The personnel with Forts was commanded by Lukash; there were about 12-15 people of them as of Feb. 18, 2014.

During interrogation by prosecutor Kovalchuk, Shapovalov said that ammunition distributed among Berkut fighters in February 2014 included that with lead case-shots. The suspect confirmed that battalion commander Lukash was well aware of this.

Answering prosecutor's question whether Shapovalov personally saw how his unit employees shot at Maidan protesters from the pump-action shotguns, he said "Yes. I saw that."

Read more: Field of fire at Maidan activists in February 2014 was within Berkut company's position, - prosecutor

Shapovalov also confirmed the fact of beating of Maidan activists by law enforcement officers with riot control weapons at Kriposnyi Lane. He saw the beating himself but did not give an order to stop for he thought the fighters wouldn't listen to him, the suspect said.

Answering a question of his lawyer about whether he could personally leave the territory of Instytuska Street where most of the killings happened or stop other fighters, he said he could do that but was afraid of being court-martialed by Lukash. Shapovalov says he regrets that he left for Kyiv in February 2014 and the things went as they did.

The suspect apologized in the court for his activities during the Euromaidan events.
 
 
 
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