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Flowers, candles cover Instytutska Street in memory of Ukraine's 'Heavenly Hundred'

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Feb. 26, 2014, 6:13 p.m. | Photo — by Kostyantyn Chernichkin, Pavlo Podufalov
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Ukrainians commemorate Ukraine's "Heavenly Hundred" as EuroMaidan's slain victims are now known. To be more precise, the latest death count stands at 90 people killed during violent clashes between police and protesters in Kyiv. Most of them were demonstrators killed by snipers working behind police lines and riot police Feb. 18-20 on Instytutska Street.
© Kostyantyn Chernichkin

Ukraine is going through one of the most blood-soaked times in its nearly 23-year history as an independent nation.

EuroMaidanSOS, a support group for those slain in the revolution, puts the number of victims killed at 95 people since the conflict, while the Health Ministry says the official death toll is 87 people since the killing began on Jan. 22.

The first five victims came on Jan. 22. More than 50 people were shot dead alone on Feb. 20, while the rest were killed on Feb. 18. Most of those killed were demonstrators shot by snipers working behind police lines or riot-control police, although at least 16 police officers were killed also. 

Most of the violence took place near the Verkhovna Rada, on Hrushevskoho and Instytutska streets, close to the headquarters of the EuroMaidan revolution on Kyiv's Independence Square.

Now, a shrine continues to grow every day, as tens of thousands of Ukrainians keep bringing flowers and candles to Instytutska Street. The street is covered with flowers in bloom and candles.

Pictures of EuroMaidan victims hang on the walls of Zhovtnevy Palace, lie among the flowers and are attached totrees.

People make pilgrimages to the street all the time, write poems and also leave them in the street. Although Ukrainians do not call their dead comrades "victims," they call them "heroes" or the "Heavenly Hundred" and believe that the lives of these people will change the country for the better.

"I am so sorry because this happened and, at the same time, I can't believe that so many people died in a European country in the 21st century," said Anna Holodnova, a CMM manager from Kyiv, while lighting a candle at Instytutska Street. "But I am also very proud of my nation, proud to be a part of it and I think we owe with these guys the changes that started to happen now."

Text by Daryna Shevchenko

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