While most of us were celebrating Christmas, and the love and values it represents, hired thugs in Ukraine were beating a young mother nearly to death.
Several other reporters and activists were also knifed and bombed.
This was the culmination in a series of brutal assaults on Euromaidan activists in the past weeks.
Perhaps those that ordered this series of attacks were hoping that during Christmas the world (and the media) would be over-occupied with celebrating the holidays, and that this would be the best chance to break the spirit, and bring fear, to the independent journalists and activists in Ukraine.
They were seriously wrong. Many media and political organizations reported it and condemned it, such as the BBC, CNN, Deutsche Welle, The Telegraph, the EU, the US Embassy in Kiev, and the OSCE, among many others.
CAR BOMBINGS AND STABBINGS
Shortly after 21:00, on the 24 December (Christmas Eve), Dmitry Pylypets, one of the leaders of Euromaidan in Kharkiv, was attacked by two men.
He was stabbed several times and left in the street to bleed, quite possibly to death. Thankfully other people noticed him and saved his life.
According to the Kiyv Post: "activists told the Kharkiv-based civic organization Maidan that they believe the city’s mayor, Gennady Kernes, to be behind the attack."
It appears the attacks are getting worse and worse, possibly emboldened by the lack of Western Media attention after previous intimidations, such as the burning of the cars of the leading activists in Kharkiv, or the several reported beatings by the Berkut (the illegal, un-registered "riot police" in Ukraine) of peaceful Euromaidan activists returning home after demonstrations.
And it would actually get even worse on Christmas Day...
YOUNG MOTHER LEFT FOR DEAD
In the early hours of the 25 Dec, Tetyana Chornovol's car was intercepted by an expensive sports vehicle. She tried to turn back, but her car was pushed to the side of the road.
The assailants then broke the window of her car and dragged her out.
Tetyana tried to run, but the three men caught up with her.
Without saying anything, they proceeded to viciously and systematically beat her.
When they got tired of beating they threw her in a ditch. She was almost dead, unable to move, or speak.
However, as it is often said - miracles happen at Christmas - and in the middle of the night someone else noticed her and saved her life.
The doctors who later took care of her said that she "will need at least three operations, if all goes optimistically".
JUST LIKE A COLD WAR SPY FILM
During the past 48 hours more information and developments on Chernovol's ordeal and assailants, have been trickling out.
When Tetyana realized she is being followed, she switched on a camera inside her car. This thankfully recorded the pursuing car and even the licence plates clearly! The recording was later taken by "authorities", but was NOT given to the police. Expecting this, Tetyana somehow got the recording to other people beforehand, and it was up-loaded to the Internet.
The police never saw the original tape, but watched the video on-line.
As a result, the car and the three assailants have been recognized and a police search was issued for them.
Two of the thugs are now in custody, and the car was found as well. There is one more assailant on the run, but the police are aware of his name and address, his photo has been posted on the internet and he will hopefully be apprehended soon.
(Editors Note: Shortly after this article was written the third assailant was also caught.)
Despite it being Christmas day, and most offices being closed, or working with the smallest possible staff, all major international media, as well as all major international organizations reported the issue. It even helped to raise awareness of other similar assaults, which had been overlooked.
The American Embassy in Kiev put it most concisely and directly:
"We condemn the attack and call for an immediate investigation, which unlike previous such incidents must result in those responsible being held fully accountable under the law.
We express our concern at a strikingly similar series of events over the last few weeks, targeting individuals, property, and political activity, apparently aimed at intimidating or punishing those linked to the EuroMaidan protests."
YOU ARE PROTECTING HUMAN RIGHTS IN UKRAINE
On the 30 Nov, there was a violent assault on the Euromaidan protestors, by the Berkut, during which dozens of people were hospitalized. This led to a huge increase in the number of protesters on the streets of Ukraine.
On the 1 and 2 of December there was a systematic attack of 40 journalists. This brought along even more people and journalists, from all over the world.
The sheer numbers scared the Ukranian government (and reportedly neighbouring repressive governments), and the assaults stopped for a while.
And now these brutal and utterly immoral attacks over the last few days have also backfired and brought more media attention to the lack of democracy and human rights in Ukraine, as well as many more people to the streets of Kiev.
Nevertheless, whenever the media and the western society turn their attention away from Ukraine, the usual repressive and brutal methods start again immediately... International solidarity and media attention is the only thing stopping Ukraine from becoming a complete and ruthless dictatorship.
YOU can also help the victims in Ukraine, by simply sharing, or tweeting one of the articles by the BBC, CNN, Deutsche Welle, or The Telegraph, for example. The more shares they get, the more prominently they will be featured on these websites, and could even make it to the TV stations!
If you are in Kiev (or can travel there), the Euromaidan organizers have made an application to set a new Guiness Record for the most people singing a national anthem. They hope to achieve this on New Years' Eve.
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