Protesters at Chinese embassy call for intervention on Ukraine invasion

Euromaidan rallies come to Dublin’s embassy belt as demonstrators jump up and down

The Euromaidan protests began in November 2013 in the main square in Kyiv, and lasted through that winter and into the following spring.

The protesters gathered every night, often in sub-zero temperatures and the biting cold of an eastern European winter. They wanted their country to reorient away from Russia and towards the European Union.

To keep warm they regularly jumped up and down and chanted in Ukrainian “He who is not jumping is a Muscovite” (the latter being Ukrainian slang for a Russian).

The crowd who gathered outside the Chinese embassy in Dublin on Monday was smaller than the number who participated in the Euromaidan protests, and the weather for the latest protest was a lot more clement, but they repeated the same chant, all jumping up and down at the same time.


The protest provided a colourful spectacle for motorists who honked their horns in support as they drove past the embassy, which is on Ailesbury Road, the centre of Dublin’s embassy belt.

The protesters want China to use its leverage over Russia to stop the fighting in Ukraine. China abstained during a vote at the UN Security Council at the weekend condemning the Russian invasion.

Artem Nedostup, who led chants calling on China to intervene, has not heard from his Ukrainian family in three days. They are from the southern city of Tokmak, which has seen very heavy fighting between Russian and Ukrainian forces. All the mobile phone masts have been destroyed.

"I would love to bring them to Ireland to safety. I would like to do that now, but it is impossible," he said.

“It all depends on the outcome of the coming days. We really hope we can reach peace in Ukraine.”

Russian propaganda

Among the protesters at the embassy were Aksentiia Syniavska from Luhansk and Sergey Koloskov from Donetsk, the two breakaway regions in eastern Ukraine controlled by Russian-backed separatists.

Russian president Vladimir Putin has claimed the Russian-speaking majority in both provinces were being persecuted and that he was intervening in the region to stop a genocide, allegations dismissed by western powers as baseless propaganda.

Ms Syniavska said the claims of persecution were “the bulls**t of Russian propaganda” and that many in the West had fallen for it.

“They are not Russians. They are Russian-speaking. They speak Russian for the same reason that Irish people speak English,” she said.

“[Ukraine] is Russian-speaking because of the occupation in the 20th century. There is no discrimination whatsoever.

“Language has never been an issue. It’s an excuse. Russia wants to occupy the whole country and other European countries. That’s the real reason for the invasion.”

Mr Koloskov said he grew up in the old Soviet Union and only learned Ukrainian when at school. "It has never passed through my head that I am being persecuted for speaking Russian."

A small crowd was also gathered outside the Russian embassy on Orwell Road for the fifth day in a row.

The entrance to the embassy has been badly defaced by graffiti and the plaque stating that it is the embassy of the Russian Federation has been removed.

Ronan McGreevy

Ronan McGreevy

Ronan McGreevy is a news reporter with The Irish Times