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 Zakharchenko, Yakymenko were masterminds behind Maidan crackdown on Feb. 18, - Turchynov

Ukraine's former Security Service chief Oleksandr Yakymenko and ex-Interior Minister Oleksandr Zakharchenko were the key plotters behind the deadly Maidan dispersal on Feb. 18, 2014.

National Security and Defense Council Secretary Oleksandr Turchynov said in an interview with Censor.NET.

"Basically, Zakharchenko and Yakymenko [developed the crackdown plan]. There was information Yanukovych's eldest son Oleksandr was also involved. But, in fact, this couple and the internal troops commander were responsible to Yanukovych for the Maidan massacre," Turchynov said.

Watch more: Zhovtnevyi Commanding Hill: reconstruction of Maidan massacre of Feb. 20, 2014. VIDEO

Asked who ordered protesters to launch an attack, knowing it would be fatal for many of them, Turchynov said: "It was a personal heroic impulse of Maidan defenders. Nobody could give the command to rush and die. Maidan lived its own life by then and did not require directions by staff or the opposition leaders.

The NSDC secretary noted no negotiations with Yanukovych took place after Feb. 18, 2014.

Watch more: New video published in Maidan massacre case. VIDEO

"Any negotiations were senseless. They could not defeat Maidan on the night of Feb. 18-19 and knew it was a breaking point, and the victory was ours, which completely shifted the balance of power. They just failed to beat us! Already in the morning, people from other regions and Kyivites started coming. Everyone was in the mood for victory and understood they had to take a little bit more efforts to make the regime fall," Turchynov added.

On Feb. 18, 2014, mass clashes between Maidan protesters and security forces broke out on Kyiv's Maidan Nezalezhnosti Square, causing dozens of deaths. Security forces launched their offensive simultaneously on Hrushevskoho and Instytutska Streets, using guns and grenades. In response, activists threw stones and shot fireworks.

Around midnight, electricity was cut off on Maidan and surrounding area. According to Maidan medics, 23 people were killed in clashes on Feb. 18.
 
 
 
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