US Vice President Joe Biden has arrived in Kyiv. He will hold a bilateral meeting on Friday with Ukraine’s Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk followed by a working lunch with President Poroshenko. It’s understood he will present a package of non-lethal aid for Ukraine.
The discussions will take place to the backdrop of the first anniversary of the Maidan protests. Candles will be lit in the morning ahead of a planned ceremony in the evening.
The president and prime minister will lay a wreath to commemorate those who died in clashes, estimated at over one hundred.
Two residents reflected on the events in Maidan: “It is the awakening of consciousness of Ukrainians, the unity of the nation and I hope the birth of the nation. But we cannot relax. There is a lot of work ahead of us,” said one while another added: “I think that any slogans are very superficial, because something has changed dramatically inside us. We will never be the same as we were before.”
Small protests erupted in Maidan on November 21 last year after the country’s then president Victor Yanukovych abandoned an agreement to forge closer ties with the European Union.
Demonstrators also rallied as MPs rejected a bill that would have allowed jailed former President Yulia Tymoshenko to leave Ukraine.