Demonstrators fear Mezhyhirya could fall under Yanukovych control due to prosecutorial inaction

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Activists staged a sit-in protest outside the prosecutor general's office on July 8.

About 50 activists and staff from Mezhyhirya came to the prosecutor general’s office and demanded answers from officials about why Mezhyhirya, the former residence of ex-President Viktor Yanukovych, still seemed to belong to a company called Tantalit. That firm was previously owned by Serhiy Klyuev, a former lawmaker from the former ruling of Party of Regions and more recently with the Opposition Bloc. He is hiding from justice abroad.

Protesters accused prosecutors of inaction over clarifying property rights at Mezhyhirya, a 140-hectare, billion-dollar estate used by Yanukovych until he fled power on February 22, 2014.

In a complaint written by Olexander Priymak, the new head of Tantalit, to the Vyshgorod district police department on June 24, he asked for police to be send to Mezhyhirya in order to ensure the safety of the employees and Kyivenergo, which intended to turn off the power on the territory of his property.

“On June 30, Priymak came to us and said to hand over all the keys and to get out from the territory. We reminded him that the land of Mezhyhirya is already state property according to the court decision and sent him to prosecutor general’s office,” said Denis Tarakhkotelik, the head of the national nature park Mezhihirya and an activist of the Automaidan.

According to Kyivenergo press secretary Tatyana Orlenko, since April 2014 Tantalit has not been paying for the electricity of the property seized by court order. The debt is almost Hr 10 million and keeps growing.

Tarakhkotelik claimed that Mezhyhirya was officially registered as a legal entity in order to pay debts. But Kyivenergo refused to re-sign the consumer contract with them. “They said we should pay, but on behalf of Tantalit,” Tarakhkotelik said.

The protest ended in a fight with a guard when activists attempted to enter into the prosecutor general’s office with spades full of dung.

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