Ukraine’s Big Three

Meet the Opposition Leaders at the Helm of Euromaidan

A pro-EU rally at Independence Square in Kiev, December 17, 2013. Marko Djurica / Courtesy Reuters

Over the last few days, Ukraine has seen the worst clashes since antigovernment protests began in November after Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych refused to sign an association agreement with the European Union. In the last two months, Yanukovych and his supporters have declined to make any concessions to the opposition, responding instead with riot police and, last week, a set of laws intended to severely curtail the protests. Talks between Yanukovych and the opposition, when they have taken place, have come to nothing. Now, with violence rising in Kiev’s Independence Square, known as the Maidan, Ukraine’s opposition leaders must decide what to do next.

Ukraine’s Euromaidan, as the demonstration is known, has three leaders but no hero. That is somewhat surprising for a country with such a long tradition of protest, including, most recently, the Orange Revolution. In 2004, Viktor Yushchenko, who had previously been prime minister and

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