Ukraine President Flees Kiev After "Coup D'Etat" As Protesters Storm Presidential Palace, Plunder Gold; Army On Hold

Tyler Durden's picture

It has been a busy night in the Ukraine.

First, the newly-installed interior minister declared that the police were now behind the protesters they had fought for days, giving central Kiev the look of a war zone with 77 people killed, while central authority crumbled in western Ukraine. Then despite yesterday's latest anti-crisis "agreement" which we said would last at best hours, the protesters continued their pressure against embattled president Yanukovich, demanding his outright and unconditional resignation, leading to his fleeing Kiev by airplane overnight to the far more pro-Russian city of Kharkiv located in the Eastern Ukraine, even as his arch rival, Yulia Tymoshenko, who is held in prison in the same city, was rumored to have been released on her way to the far more anti-Russian city of Kiev - it turns out those rumors have so far been incorrect.

Then there was a plethora of rumors that he has or is about to either escape the country and/or resign, sparking celebrations in Kiev, only for him to appear on TV subsequently and not only deny a resignation is coming, but that he accused the current leaders in Kiev of staging a coup d'etat and that all parliamentary decisions today have been illegitimate, saying "I did all I could to avoid bloodshed" while comparing recent events in the Ukraine to the "Fascist Revolution" in Germany. This was promptly rebutted by the Polish foreign minister Radoslaw Sikorski who tweeted there is no coup in Kiev and President Viktor Yanukovych has 24 hours to sign re-adopted 2004 constitution into law.

The just released interview is below:

Most importantly, all of this is happening as governors, and regional legislators in eastern Ukraine question authority of national parliament. Meanwhile over in the "western" Kiev, Parliament members of the opposition began laying the groundwork for a change in leadership, electing Oleksander Turchynov, an ally of the imprisoned opposition leader and former prime minister, Yulia V. Tymoshenko, as speaker. And Mr. Klitschko called for new elections to replace Mr. Yanukovych by May 25. “Millions of Ukrainians see only one choice — early presidential and parliamentary elections,” he tweeted.

The NYT reports:

Members of an opposition group from Lviv called the 31st Hundred — carrying clubs and some of them wearing masks — were in control of the entryways to the palace Saturday morning. And Vitali Klitschko, one of three opposition leaders who signed the deal to end the violence, said that Mr. Yanukovych had “left the capital” but his whereabouts were unknown, with members of the opposition speculating that he had gone to Kharkiv, in the northeast part of Ukraine.


Protesters claimed to have established control over Kiev. By Saturday morning they had secured key intersections of the city and the government district of the capital, which police officers had fled, leaving behind burned military trucks, mattresses and heaps of garbage at the positions they had occupied for months.

All of this is pointing to a national schism between the pro-Russian east, and its new de facto capital, Kharkiv, and the western part of the nation, where the EU (and CIA) influences are strongest. Luckily, for now there won't be a military involvement:


... for now.This will likely change: moments ago Russia's Foreign Minister said Ukraine's opposition is led by "armed extremists" and their actions pose direct threat to Ukraine's sovereignty, which means a Russian involvement in some capacity is imminent.

Perhaps more important was the following statement:


That would the Russian gas which traverses the country, which can be halted with the turn of a spigot.


Bottom line, the situation is fluid, and is increasingly bordering on an all too real threat of civil war between the country's linguistically and affiliation-divided west and east.


The one thing that is clear is that the former presidential compound is now in the power of the people. From CBS.

The protesters, who are angry over corruption and want Ukraine to move toward Europe rather than Russia, claimed full control of Kiev and took up positions around the president's office and a grandiose residential compound believed to be his, though he never acknowledged it.


At the sprawling suburban Kiev compound, protesters stood guard and blocked more radical elements among them from entering the building, fearing unrest. Moderate protesters have sought to prevent their comrades from looting or taking up the weapons that have filled Kiev in recent weeks.


The compound became an emblem of the secrecy and arrogance that defines Yanukovych's presidency, painting him as a leader who basks in splendor while his country's economy suffers and his opponents are jailed. An AP journalist visiting the grounds Saturday saw manicured lawns, a pond, several luxurious houses and the big mansion itself, an elaborate confection of five stories with marble columns.


Protesters attached a Ukrainian flag to a lamppost at the compound, shouting: "Glory to Ukraine!"


A group of protesters in helmets and shields stood guard at the president's office Saturday. No police were in sight.

Which brings us to the most interesting finding of the day: what has so far been plundered from the palace:

Inside Yanukovych's private residence

Pictures emerging from the president's private residence in the outskirts of Kyiv after protesters stormed the building.


Protesters with an "euromaidan" flag at Yanukovych's balcony.

And as usually happens, the plundering has revealed numerous golden coins discovered in Yanukovych's garage and a 1 kg gold coin with the president's portrait.

Finally, for the blow by blow, or rather tweet by tweet of events in the past 24 hours, we go to Euronews which has done the best job of summairizing the constatntly changing situation:

Yanukovych on TV:  "I'm not leaving the country"

On an interview broadcast minutes ago on ukrainian TV UBR, and recorded at 12h30, president Yanukovych refuses to resign saying "we've taken all the steps to stabilize the country, we voted an amnesty law and organised early elections". The president that fled Kyiv to go to Kharkiv also says, "I'm trying to protect people from bandits". Yanukovitch compares also Ukraine now to Nazi Germany in the 30s. In the interview, the president assures that he's not leaving the country. He also denounced on Saturday what he described as a "coup d'etat". "The events witnessed by our country and the whole world  are an example of a coup d'etat," he was quoted as saying.


Yanukovych resignation to be read soon at the parliament

Euronews' correspondents in Kyiv report that the statement should be read at the parliament in the next minutes.

Waiting for the release of jailed former Prime-Minister Yulia Tymoshenko. Conflicting reports that she was already freed from Kharkiv jail.

Tymoshenko daughter speaks to Kyiv Post at parliament, says releasing her mom won't be easy

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VD's picture

he was never going to step down (or have elections)! here's how this plays out: after Olympics Putin dresses his Russian Army in Ukraine Army (they barely have one) uniforms and enters from the South. In less than a few weeks order is restored and Prez comes back to Kiev.


and it is a pogrom proper on the ground: there are several families of certain religion being hidden in churches right now in Kiev!

Dewey Cheatum Howe's picture

Sounds about right except for the fake troops part. Russians probably send in the troops or threat of under the guise of coup against legitimate government. US/EU counters with same gambit and unless everyone wants a hot proxy war it after jawboning is done it gets kicked up to the UN and the 'monitors' are sent in to ensure the process. I use monitors loosely since monitors just gives the mercenaries err contractors and undercover official types better cover to continue what they started only difference is more eyes are watching. Same as it always was.

VD's picture

it's not fake troops; it's the simple fact that Ukraine has no real army and dressing Russian troops in their uniforms is what i was told from an 'insider'... (this is also why we haven't seen a single true tank in Kiev: Russian tanks will clean this up {tho unsure if they will brand them Ukranian})..

kliguy38's picture

Time for some banker's to meet the Vlad.........this bitch is gonna get hot folks.........better own gold but of course your paper should wipe your arse just fine

TahoeBilly2012's picture

Might start getting a little chilly in European living rooms.  


jbvtme's picture

that was quick. even lenin would be impressed.

BaBaBouy's picture


ALWAYS Go After The GOLD #1 FIRST, Bitchiez...

it aint easy's picture

Things like these only have one winner: George Soros. (And his masters ofc)

flacon's picture

Plunder Gold?! I thought that the pH Dee economists had determined that in the 21st century gold was simply a barbarous relic. Why would anyone want to steal a useless soft yellow metal? /sarc

Never One Roach's picture

Watch for those coins to pop up on Ebay.

Lore's picture

...or at the COMEX. Or the next shipment to Germany. 


holmes's picture

WTF. So who is pulling George Soros's strings?

BanksterSlayer's picture

Muammar Gaddafi to Yanukovych : Welcome to my world.

Urban Redneck's picture

All wars are banker (& lawyer) wars. More likely that gas flows to Ukraine get cut (if the EU is downstream it's collateral damage), which combined with withholding of the 2B tranche to facilitate debt service would force Ukraine into a default (absent Janet or Mario coughing up cash to pay Vlad... to prevent more financial turmoil in EuroPonzi Happyland) and limit the flexibility of Parliament while giving the Russians maneuvering room on the expropriation and protection of FDI front (which provides another legal basis for moving troops after the closing ceremonies). But the more important military movements may actually be elsewhere (right hand/left hand, watch your 6, or cover your flank, depending on which level one views things from).

Zero Debt's picture

And Monsanto gets to make more GMO wheat

Freddie's picture

Notice how the State Dept/El See Eye Ahh Dah and Mi6 started this during Sochi and at the start of Spring.  This was no accident.  Poor Ukrainians - they get to be part of the EU/euro/ECB debt slave gulag.  Just like Amerikans are slaves to The Fed.

Unknown User's picture

Poor Ukrainians? First, they want it. Second, they deserve it. Third, they are real peasants who would not even mind it. These are the people Matt Taibbi was writing about...

"Actual rich people can’t ever be the target. It’s a classic peasant mentality: going into fits of groveling and bowing whenever the master’s carriage rides by, then fuming against the Turks in Crimea or the Jews in the Pale or whoever after spending fifteen hard hours in the fields. You know you’re a peasant when you worship the very people who are right now, this minute, conning you and taking your shit. Whatever the master does, you’re on board. When you get frisky, he sticks a big cross in the middle of your village, and you spend the rest of your life praying to it with big googly eyes. Or he puts out newspapers full of innuendo about this or that faraway group and you immediately salute and rush off to join the hate squad. A good peasant is loyal, simpleminded, and full of misdirected anger."

Johnny Cocknballs's picture

Who knows, but it's certainly possible that Spetsnaz GRU dudes are in Kiev, awaiting the new NATO/EU/IMF puppets.

Unfortunately I don't think Putin can keep playing defense and may be forced to make a gambit...  I still think it's possible there's a Syria for Ukraine trade. 

The neocon crowd is israeli-centric. So are the "realists" like Dov Zakheim.  They're more concerned about Syria than wresting Ukraine from Russia and would likely see it as a good short term move...  the Zbig types want to weaken Russia and get control of Stanistan, but the Asian pivot and need to box out China in Africa has already weakend their position.


Frankly, the "Zionists" really do have wildly disproportionate power.  They dont want the US distracted from Syria/Iran already more than it is, and it is unthinkable that the UK or France would risk a hot war against the Russians in Eastern Europe.

magpie's picture

After the Volgograd bombings, any peace offerings by the USA are considered invalid...and Putin will continue fighting for whatever he is fighting for.

magpie's picture

America cannot be reasoned with, i don't see why this can't be a valid perspective if you are Russian president.

El Tuco's picture

Is that what Vlad told you? You must have some pretty high connections to hear Ukraine has no army. Are you seriously that big of an idiot? Where the fuck do you retards come from?

VD's picture

what is the current size of the Ukranian Army? have you seen an actual Ukranian Army on the ground (don't confuse the police force). And yes i do have what you call connections. Do you? You should thank me for taking time to share this, but...

Carl Popper's picture

Size doesn't matter. 


It's how skillfully you use what you got that is important 

VD's picture

when size is near zero skills are moot...Russia is Ukraine's true army...and they will bring the tanks too...

thamnosma's picture

Another idiotic post.  If the Russians invade the Ukraine, they will wish they were back in Afghanistan.   That is NOT what they are going to do. Silly BS.

Now they may push for or force a vote in the east to join Russia since Stalin murdered the Ukrainians and moved his Russians into that area many decades ago.  In fact, Stalin's treatment of Ukraine eventually led to this.

Volkodav's picture

Stalin was not a Russian.

From 1917 thru Stalin Russians were never in control.

Russians suffered more than any.

A Nanny Moose's picture

Afghanistan didn't have an army either.

thamnosma's picture

LOL, yeah you have connections.  Sure, I'll believe anything some guy named VD writes on a blog.   The Ukraine has an army, so you're discredited immediately.  Obviously it's not the size or strength of the Russian army, duh.  I don't think anybody is arguing the Mexican army is up to the American army.  In fact, the Ukrainian army has been greatly cut from its 800,000 troops 20 years ago to about 200,000 now due to economic mismanagement and forced cuts.

The Berkut has several thousand special forces types, but their allegiance is iffy.  They usually do the dirty work of whoever is in power, which again, is iffy at this point.

Of course, the idiots here will likely fall for your "connections" BS.

VD's picture

iffy you say? if you only knew... and calling people idiots that are giving you the real deal is .... please amuse us: what is the est size of the army: if u said 200k then u r the idiot! do u know how the Ukraine army surrendered to the Russians? do you know anything?

Volkodav's picture

Surrendered to the Russians?

Volkodav's picture

Agree about the BS...

Ukraine is estimated 150,000 active and a million outside experts

Ayreos's picture

People also forget army stationed in russian areas of Ukraine won't fight against the side their families are on. This includes all of navy forces (only sea is in south-east in Ukraine) and a good part of russian-sourced air forces and arsenal. Ukraine has indeed no army.

thamnosma's picture

there are many idiots here

VD's picture

and many of the idiots qualify for removal under discrimination policy...

El Tuco's picture so funny.....

AreaMan's picture

Tymoshenko is quite the Babe! If weve learned anything from Argentina its that hot chics run tight ships!


Hillary in 2016!!!

The.Harmless.Who's picture




Tell me "VD", what "certain religion" would you be referring to? 


It seems that folks of a "certain" talmudic sect have been at the forefront at putting Ukraine in a civil war.  


Ukraine Protests: Israeli Ex-Officer Leads Militant Group


Despite calls by Jewish leaders to remain neutral, young Jews have been on the front lines of protests against Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich, the Jerusalem Post wrote last December.



They'll try to re-write history later no doubt... They always do.  


Money hides lots of blood, and buys lots of ink. 


Fuck the Zionists!


Sinnedi's picture

Are you a cia shill or what?

Anything that is said under the jewish nature is intelligence drivel.

The esoteric mystery schools use the jews as disinfo like this picture prooves

The esoteric schools have been around before religion. 


“To learn who rules over you, simply find out who you are not allowed to criticize.”


Guy talks about the secret mysteries and gets tazed.

lady gets taken off for talking about the secret mysteries on congress floor.


Hey have 50,000. Well you can now get out of jail courtesy of the mystery schools.

If you translate this it is the same stuff as the above messages.

Hey could you talk about the mystery schools for a little bit without religion OR combination of/because all esoteric knowledge teaches that all symbology from religion is esoteric/astrological basically. 12 zodiac=12 apostles. ETC ETC.


I am sorry I just cannot let you manipulate everyone here.

mumcard's picture

Sinnedi, a member for 5 weeks.  How'd your jewish internet defense courses go?

The.Harmless.Who's picture



First of all, I didn't mention "Jews" - The yahoo article did. 


Second of all, for you to talk about "Jews" when I mentioned Zionists demonstrate a real lack of awareness and education on your part - no matter how much wanna-be intellect you want to chuck my way.


Third of all, by stating the following: 


I am sorry I just cannot let you manipulate everyone here


You are disrespecting the readership and intelligence of Zero Hedge - people who are more educated than you care to think.


Finally, it is you that is a Shill - A ZIONIST Shill. 


thamnosma's picture

everything is a zionist plot.  Take a pill.

The.Harmless.Who's picture




No, thanks thamnosma - I won't take a pill from a shill


Now, regarding the zionist plot element... 


Tell me, are you disputing the fact that Zionists are involved in this? 


Are you disputing that the war on Ukraine doesn't have the hands of banksters (inherent Zionists) in it?  


You know banksters don't you - Greenspan, Bernanke, Yellen, Fischer, Blankfein, Dimon, et al - You know what they are don't you: Zionists


Yes, Zionists like..... Victoria Nuland - Remember her?  Read up - and educate yourself.  Read her stance and you'll see that she's a proud Zionist. 


Take a pill... Pffffft 

nmewn's picture

"I hold in my hand, a piece of paper..." ;-)

El Oregonian's picture

I sure do hope the Ukrainians drag out several bankers, along with their central banker counterparts shackled in chains, being marched up to the gallows.

Unfortunately, they have probably all been long gone.

trader1's picture

another version of the truth




Reuters is snapping excerpts from a speech by Sergei Lavrov, the Russian minister for foreign affairs.