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додано: 03-12-2002
Eddie: 'Welcome to Kuchma's Ukraine!' (Feel 'kharasho'?)
Brama.com political forum

Версія до друку // Редагувати // Стерти // URL: http://maidan.org.ua/static/mai/1038931613.html

"My name is Eddie. I am an American citizen who has been teaching English in Kyiv, Ukraine since September 2002.

On Monday December 2, 2002, at 3:30pm, I was walking to work (International House at 7 Vasilevskoy) along Peremohy Prospect. I was stopped by 3 uniformed personnel who demanded that I remove by coat on the street at sub-zero temperature. They proceeded to search all my pockets but found nothing illegal. In English, I told them that I am an American citizen (which they seem to understand, because they were repeating the word) teaching English in Kyiv. At least one of them said the words: teacher, student and school.

I showed them a photocopy of my U.S. Passport and Ukrainian Visa, and I told them repeatedly in English and gesture that the school has my passport. (Because the school was going to help extend my visa.)

They took me in their blue/yellow utility vehicle to what looks like a police station near Victory Square. They then took me into an interrogation room and acted like they didn't understand any English. While surrounnded by 10 uniformed personnel with long shot guns in their hands, I tried to remember phone numbers of friends and school but couldn't. I told them U.S. Embassy, telephone, and pointed to the telephone. One of them (the only one not in uniform, I don't know whether he is a police,) said, It's not America, it's Ukraine. Thus they refused to let me make a phone call to the U.S. Embassy.

Then they pointed to the jail cells in the room and threatened me. I said what can I do? The plain-clothed person said 100 Grivna. Not knowing if he represented all of them or was setting me up for a trap, I turned to the uniformed people and said da (yes)? for confirmation. But no one made any emotion or sound.

During the ordeal, I tried to keep calm, put on a smiley face to keep the atmosphere light, and never getting angry. I even tried to use humor. I said American, Ukrainian, friends while pointing to myself, to them and shaking my hands together. They just laughed in my face.

Then about 7 of them went into different rooms, 3 of them went into a glass-enclosed room to make phone calls. I knocked on the door and asked May I go? both in voice and with hand gestures. The person who appeared to be highest ranked said nyet (no).

Then they came out and gestured me to empty all my pockets. At different points during this, some of them rubbed their fingers on one hand together to gesture money. I took out 100 Grivna and the man shook his head. I wrote 200 on paper and he said horosho (good).

So I put 200 Grivna on the table, two of the people quickly split the money while I put my keys and wallet back. Then one of them took me onto the street.

-- Thank you for your time."

Версія до друку // Редагувати // Стерти // URL: http://maidan.org.ua/static/mai/1038931613.html

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