Censor.NET correspondent reports from the scene.
Downtown streets in Kyiv have been closed for traffic since early morning over planned protests. In the government block, the streets of Hrushevskoho, Lypska, Shovkovychna have been closed, and police are patrolling Arsenalna metro area and stopping traffic there as well.
Police units blocking traffic in Arsenalna metro area.
After 9 a.m., participants of protests planned for today, Oct. 17, started arriving to the Verkhovna Rada building. Activists of Avtomaidan wanted to reach the Verkhovna Rada building, but were stopped by police. MPs Ihor Lutsenko (Batkivshchyna faction) and Yurii Derevianko (independent) tried to agree with police on letting the activists' cars in. Drivers were honking in protest to the road closing.
Activists arriving at Rada building for a protest.
Law enforcers preventing Automaidan vehicles from entering the government block.
Derevianko is trying to take the cars through police checkpoints.
As reported, a protest with a request to hold a political reform in Ukraine is scheduled for Oct. 17 at Verkhovna Rada building in Kyiv. Organizers of the protest say the key demands are to change the system of election in Ukraine, including a shift to proportional election system with open candidates list, restriction of political advertising on TV, creation of anti-corruption court, and restriction of parliamentary immunity.
Former Odesa governor Mikheil Saakashvili said that if the MPs do not fulfill the protesters' demands on Oct. 17, some of them might stay at the Rada building for indefinite protest. SBU reported earlier it had prevented a possible provocation during Oct. 17 mass events in Kyiv.
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