Statistics of protests that changed the country (INFOGRAPHICS)
On July 9, at a press conference at the UNIAN news agency, sociologists of the Society Research Center presented the results of monitoring protests, repressions and concessions during the Maidan period, which is carried out with the support of the International Renaissance Foundation and the National Endowment for Democracy.
Throughout the Maidan, sociologists of the Center for the Study of Society recorded all the protest events that took place throughout Ukraine, along with repression by the Yanukovych government. A unique database of all protests and repressions on all squares has been created, anti-Maidan and behind them now allows us to accurately answer many topical questions about the participants of the Maidan, its national distribution and the role of violence, which continue heated discussions, continue manipulations by politicians, distorted picture in the media.
The main results of the study are provided in this review.
MAIN RESULTS OF RESEARCH
In total for the period from November 21, 2013 to February 23, 2014, at least 3950 protest events were recorded (the data are still being supplemented and updated). This number of protests for three months exceeds the protest activity for the whole of 2013 until November 20 (3428) and the number of protests for each of the previous years, starting in 2010.
Among the 3950 protests for the period 3235 were directly connected with the Maidan and took place in its support, and 365 can be attributed to anti-Maidan.
Notable members of the Maidan
Among the participants of the Maidan, the organization whose participation in the protests was more often reported by the media is VO “Svoboda” . The participation of this party was recorded in less than 18% of protests related to the Maidan. Other parties took part in fewer Maidan protests. In particular, the participation of "Motherland" was recorded in 13%, UDAR - in 10%, "Democratic Alliance" - in 3%, and the Radical Party - 1% of Maidan protests. Another 2% of protest events reported the participation of opposition parties without specifying. In 5% among political participants only unidentified politicians or deputies of local councils were recorded. Total participation of political parties, individual politicians, representatives of local authorities accounted for 35% of the protest events of the Maidan. At the same time, the participation of parties and politicians was higher in the initial stages of the Maidan (until January 19) - above 40% - however, it fell sharply during the protest events of the last phase of the Maidan (from February 18 to 23) - to 20%.
Among non-partisan participants and initiatives, the participation of Avtomaydan (6%), the right-wing sector (6%), and Maidan Self-Defense (4%) was the most visible. Total participation of public organizations was recorded in 13% of the protest events of the Maidan.
It is important to keep in mind that this is exactly the reported media participation, since often protesters were reported collectively, for example, “activists to Euromaidan”. In 50% of protest events of Maidan, thus, the participation of one particular party, organization, trade unions, and ideological initiative was not reported. These indicators should be viewed as a kind of “minimum level” of participation in protests, as well as an indicator of its visibility to the media. In addition, it is important to remember that this is the data of participation in protest events. Promises that were not prioritized to protest, for example, humanitarian ones like Euromaidan-SOS or “Warta in the hospital” were not expectedly noticeable in the information about protest events.
The role of the far right
In total, the participation of extreme right-wing forces (VO Svoboda, the Right Sector and other Ukrainian ultranationalist parties, organizations and initiatives) was recorded in 25% of Maidan protests. This is obviously contrary to the propaganda pictures of Russian television, since most of the protests of Maidan, according to reports, passed without their participation, and the role of the right-wing sector was greatly exaggerated. However, this is, nevertheless, a significant proportion of Maidan, which could not be neglected, hushed up, or understated. But otherwise, IN "Svoboda" turned out to be an active political force on the Maidan.
In addition, the visibility of Freedom and the Right Sector far exceeded other identified organizations / initiatives in the most violent events that received disproportionate media attention. The right sector was the most active initiative in violent protests of Maidan, its participation in not less than 16% of violent events. It is followed by VO "Svoboda", whose participation in violence was recorded in 10% of cases. The participation of the Maidan Self-Defense was reported in 7% of violent protests, the other parties and initiatives took part in less than 3% of violent events each.
The value of regional squares
Despite the fact that the Kiev Maidan was more often reported in the media, the share of its protests was only 13% of the entire Maidan (433 protest events) .
But the leader in the number of protests Maidan is the Western region , where they were recorded 38% (at least 1,218 protests). Also, the Kiev indicators are ahead of the Central Region with a share of 29% (at least 918 protests). Thus, a third of Maidan’s protest events took place outside Kiev in the western and central regions . In the East and South (without Donbass and Crimea) - by 8%, in the Donbass (3%) and in the Crimea (1%) the number of protests is less compared to Kiev, but in the aggregate, the Maidan in the south-eastern regions is also ahead of Kiev protests.
However, among the individual cities in Kiev, there was the largest number of protests of the Maidan . The closest in terms of indicators is the city - Lviv - more than doubles from the capital (185 recorded protests). In general, among the top 10 cities in the number of Maidan protests, Western Ukraine cities are expected to dominate (Rivne, Lutsk, Ivano-Frankivsk, etc.) and there is only one city from the southeast region - Odessa (at least 94 protests).
The mass of the areas in the West and in the Center, on average, was not inferior to the Maidan. There were no meetings with thousands of rallies, as in December Kiev, but the number of Maidan protests with more than a thousand participants was much higher than that of Kiev. There were 131 such protests in the Western region, 75 in the Central and 58 in Kiev. The low mass character of the Maidan was expected in the southeastern regions, especially in the Donbas and in the Crimea, where more than 50% of Maidan protests did not collect even 100 participants.
Very indicative of the understanding of the present military conflict is the fact that the Maidan in the eastern and southern regions (except Crimea) turned out to be more party and with greater participation of the extreme right. So, after Kiev (32%), the participation of the extreme right is high for the Maidans of the East and Donbas (29%), and the lowest for the Center (24%) and the West (23%). The same applies to the participation of opposition parties in local squares. In the Donbas (54%), the South (51%) and in the East (40%) it was higher than in Kiev (37%), the Center (34%) and in the West (29%), where the Maidan was really massive support from local residents. At the same time, opposition political parties and far-right forces, which already had a very low level of trust from residents of the southern and eastern regions, only pushed them more away from Maidan, excluding the emergence of a truly national movement against Yanukovych and approval of the Maidan results.
Violence and repression
The share and absolute number of confrontational and violent events on the Maidan, of course, exceeded the protests of the previous period. 24% of confrontational protests were recorded on Maidan (compared to 19% of protests in 2013 before the start of Maidan), as well as 12% of violent ones (compared to 8% before the start of Maidan in 2013). However, all the same, almost two thirds of the Maidan protests (64%) took place in a peaceful conventional way in the form of rallies, pickets, tent cities, etc.
Characteristically, the share of confrontation and violence was significantly higher in Kiev (49%), the Center (39%) and the West (37%), where Maidan had massive support than in the southern and eastern regions, where radical actions did not even make up a quarter from all the protests of the Maidan. By the number of confrontational and violent protests among individual cities, Kiev was in the lead (239 events), followed by Western Ukraine regional centers with a significant margin.
Our analysis indicates that the violence of the protesters was a response to the violence of the authorities, and not vice versa. If only 12% of the protests in the country's squares were violent, then every third protest was repressed. Not only law enforcement agencies were involved in negative reactions to the protests. In addition to the police, at least a quarter of the repressions are accounted for by unknown, most often the so-called “titushok” (besides, in a significant number of events they acted together with the police). The courts were also active - 13% of repressions.
Despite the fact that the level of violence by protesters towards the dispersal of Kiev to Euromaidan on November 30 was minimal (6%), every 40 out of a hundred protests faced a negative reaction from the authorities. And in the last phase of the Maidan (starting February 18), when the police openly used weapons, the repressive rate of the number of protests fell by half. In general, the authorities with varying success used various tactics of confrontation with activists: ignoring, pacifying and suppressing. At the beginning of the Maidan, attempts to disrupt stocks and injunctions prevailed, but over time the methods became more radical. The authorities began to actively use the courts to repress directly against activists, the pressure of law enforcement agencies and the number of arrests increased. Finally, the authorities blocked the protesters on the Maidan and turned to open violence.
There are also regional features of the use of various methods of repression. In all regions, there is a consistently high proportion of physical confrontation between the police and protesters. In Kiev, all repressive court decisions were issued, and the Center created obstacles for activists seeking to get to the central Maidan. In the East, "titushky" were active. Protesters in the West were more active, including because they met less resistance from local authorities.
Fully with the results of the study, methodology and classification of events can be found in the report "Statistics of the protest events of Maidan: participants, geography, violence" on the website of the Center for Society Research
Monitoring of protests, repressions and concessions has been conducted by the Center for Society Research since October 2009. This is a unique project for the systematic collection of information about all (regardless of subject and size) protests, repressions and concessions in response to protests occurring in real time throughout Ukraine based on monitoring more than 190 national, regional and activist web media.
The objective of this project, carried out by the Center for Social Research with the support of the International Foundation “Renaissance” and the National Foundation for Democracy Support, is to objectively examine protest activity and public movements in Ukraine and bring this information to the general public in order to protect the right to peaceful assembly and to draw attention to grassroots socio-economic protest initiatives.
The Society Research Center was established in 2009 as an independent non-profit center for the study of social problems and collective protests in Ukraine. The CDC united critically oriented social researchers: professional sociologists, political scientists, economists, cultural scientists, historians and lawyers. The mission of the Center is the creation of methodologically sound, critical, reflective knowledge for social activists, journalists, experts, politicians, researchers and the general public. The Center actively advocates an egalitarian and fair society, against the policy of privatization and commercialization of the social sphere and public goods, condemns any discrimination, including on socio-economic indicators, gender, sexual orientation, nationality, race, age. Specific areas of work of the Center are the analysis of educational reforms, the monitoring of protest and repressive activity, the analysis of urban planning policies and the study of migration processes.