Some 300 men and women celebrated feminism by marching in central Kyiv on March 8, the International Women’s Day.
The rally was a protest against all kinds of discrimination, as well as against the traditional understanding of the Women’s Day in Ukraine: Instead of a day of women’s rights, it is mostly seen in the former Soviet state as a day to celebrate women’s beauty and femininity.
Participants were holding banners calling for equal pay for men and women, gender equality, protesting against the sexual violence. They chanted: “My body – my choice!”, “Women rights are human rights!” “Flowers are for gardens, women need rights.”
Some right-wing activists tried to attack the protesters. When the column stopped near the National Opera and Ballet Theater, some 10 activists approached it and threw bottles of kefir and zelionka (liquid antiseptic of bright green color) into the crowd. Police detained four of them.
“The so-called feminism is bullshit! Everybody is being discriminated in modern society, so why do they think they are special!” shouted one of the arrested attackers as police officers were putting him into a car.
The column marched from Sofyivska Square to Volodymyrska Street, Bohdana Khmelnytskogo Street and then went down to Kreshchatyk Street, guarded by several hundred police officers and dozens of activists armed with sticks.
After the march ended, several activists attacked the participants yet again. Head of Amnesty International Ukraine Oksana Pokalchuk wrote on Facebook that a group of nationalist radicals attacked her and her friends.
It wasn’t the first-ever Feminists March in Ukraine, but it gathered more people than before. Apart from Kyiv, women marched for their rights in Uzhorod, Kharkiv, Kherson and Lviv.