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    Posted February 20, 2014 by
    jfrancisco
    Assignment
    Assignment
    This iReport is part of an assignment:
    Ukraine unrest

    jfrancisco and 14 other iReporters contributed to Open Story: Ukraine crisis as it unfolds
    More from jfrancisco

    The View from Lviv

     

    CNN PRODUCER NOTE     jfrancisco told us, 'The picture shows a march in central Lviv, today. The people are a cross section of citizens, expressing general solidarity with the opposition to the government of Victor Yanukovych. The sign says "Boritesya Poborete" which means basically "Struggle and Overcome!"'
    - hhanks, CNN iReport producer

    As the news breaks from Kyiv of continuing deaths today in new clashes between the riot police and opposition streetfighters, the situation in the western city of Lviv is very different. Without saying that extremist provocateurs are absent in Lviv, extremists have not been a part of the city's collective response in the most public and visible gathering points. The city is strongly behind the opposition, but is expressing its political resistance peacefully: through peaceful marches, free and open speech from a city-sponsored stage built in the center of the city, peaceful public prayer, spontaneous acts of voluntary public service, vigilance and quiet solidarity. There is, of course, a great deal of anger, sadness, and anxiety, but the people of Lviv are presenting a very different face of resistance to the images from the battle zone in central Kyiv.

    It is critical to note that the security situation in the city is also utterly different from the situation in Kyiv. There have been no deaths, no near deaths, no conflicts between the police and the public whatsoever. Not only are the police not stopping peaceful public protest in all its varieties, but there is essentially no police presence on the streets at all. The single noteworthy act of violence in the city in the last two, an attack on a local police precinct, occurred as the police stood by watching it happen. Within twelve hours, the public had cleaned the sidewalk and and began mending the building.

    The following photographs show what I have seen in the streets of Lviv on February 19th and 20th. I offer them in several parts.

    The first shows a march through the city streets.

    The second shows before and after pictures of the cleanup around the police precinct.

    The third and fourth show the situation in the main gathering location on Prosp. Svobody.

    The fifth shows something of daily life in the city.

    Jason Francisco
    Lviv, Ukraine, February 20, 2014

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