A member of Kyiv-Svyatoshyn district council from Petro Poroshenko Bloc Olexandr Palamarchuk got angry at 16-year old activist, Sergii Chagarov, and physically attacked the teenager. Bystanders recorded on video part of the assault, triggering public outrage and a police investigation.
Palamarchuk confronted Chagarov on July 13 on the premises of village administration in Hatne, a village in suburban Kyiv-Sviatoshyn district. The video shows that he started to yell at the young activist and then grabbed him by the neck. All this time Palamarchuk yelled that no one has a right to criticize him or his wife.
“You want freedom of speech?” screamed Palamarchuk. “I’ll knock your teeth out!”
He also grabbed activist by an ear and pushed him a couple of times.
All this time Chagarov remained calm and said that if his actions were illegal, Palamarchuk should settle the matter in court.
Chagarov told the Kyiv Post that the conflict with Palamarchuk did not end there. The Facebook blogger claims that Ihor Palamarchuk, executive council member of Hatne village council who is Olexandr Palamarchuk’s brother, punched him in the face, when cameras were no longer recording.
In response, Olexandr Palamarchuk, on July 14 published his response to the incident in which he admitted being overly emotional, but at the same time bizarrely justifying the need to defend the family honor.
“As a man, I could not stay away from the problem,” wrote Palamarchuk on his Facebook page. “I came to the boy and talked to him in public, not trying to hide my actions. I think every man would understand me.”
This ugly story began on July 9, when Chagarov wrote an elaborate post criticizing Palamarchuk for spending too much money on his vacations while Ukrainian soldiers are dying on the east.
“Palamarchuk does not give a shit about thousands of killed men,” wrote Chagarov. “He rents private planes to fly over Brovary (the city near Kyiv), flies to Maldives and spends time in one of the most expensive clubs of Odesa while citizens of his district do not know where to find money to live on.”
Chagarov added a few photos from Palamarchuk’s Facebook to underline his point. The photos show him having fun in different parts of the world, including drinking cocktails by the sea. The underage activist also emphasized that Palamarchuk’s partner allegedly has Russian citizenship.
The video shows that, during the incident, the lawmaker was surrounded by people supporting him. When some of the bystanders tried to help Chagarov, these men would not allow witnesses to stop Palamarchuk.
The video also shows that many village lawmakers supported Palamarchuk’s actions and shouted out negative comments.
Police opened a criminal proceeding against Palamarchuk. In commentary to ICTV televison channel, Mykola Zhukovych, a spokesman for Kyiv Oblast police, said that the investigation is launched on suspicion of intentionally causing minor bodily injury by the lawmaker.