Up to 25 people picketed outside Reikartz Kharkiv Hotel which hosted the press conference of the acting head of the OSCE (Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe) monitoring mission, Adam Kobieracki.
The picketers were holding banners which read "Go home," "We are not Kosovo, we need a real referendum!", "Mass media lie!", "SOS" and others, an Interfax correspondent said.
Asked which organization they represent, the picketers said they were Kharkiv residents. Some even showed their passports. They also demanded that the OSCE mission observers come to the rally in support of a referendum on federalization next Sunday.
During Kobieracki's press conference, one of the picketers, Yegor Logvinov, read out statement to the OSCE mission on behalf of "the people of Kharkiv, Kharkiv region and the whole southeast of Ukraine."
"We, the people of Kharkiv, Kharkiv region and the whole southeast of Ukraine, are outraged by the inaction of the OSCE, your policy of double standards, deliberate concealing of obvious instances of violence against people and citizens, the lies of European, American and Ukrainian mass media," the statement said.
Not all people in Kharkiv are of this view, journalist Svetlana Kublitskaya told Kobieracki.
"I apologize for the man, for what he is saying. Not all Kharkiv people think that way," Kublitskaya said.
The OSCE represents 57 states, Kobieracki said, without interfering in the discussion.
I have listened to everything that was said and I understand that there can be varying opinions about the organization, but those criticizing the OSCE should take note that their criticism is aimed at the 57 states and not the organization as such. The discussion that you started amongst yourselves is yet another argument that the monitoring mission, an objective monitoring mission, is needed, Kobieracki said.
All rights reserved by Rossiyskaya Gazeta.