Analysis of trends, impacts and challenges of nonviolent action in Ukraine between February and June 2022
Felip Daza Sierra

Ukraine is a country with more than 100 years of experience in nonviolent action. These strong capacities, combined with the informal networks of power at the local level and the country’s vibrant associative fabric of self-organised communities and organisations for human rights advocacy, mediation and dialogue for conflict transformation, would explain, in part, the ‘spontaneous’ and widespread nonviolent civil resistance in the early stages of the Russian invasion, between February and June 2022, the period of study of this research.

The findings and conclusions of this report are based on the analysis of 235 nonviolent actions across the country and field research with over 55 interviews with Ukrainian political and social leaders, academics, and activists. Extensive community mobilisation and organising has crystallized into hundreds of nonviolent actions of protest (148), non-cooperation (51), and nonviolent intervention (36).

Geographically, the majority of actions were located in the southern oblasts (Kherson and Zaporizhia), which shows the persistence of nonviolent resistance in the areas under occupation. Temporarily, in February and March public protest actions dominated, but they were drastically reduced at the end of March due to the increase of repression and abduction of activists in the occupied territories. From April onwards, nonviolent resistance transforms into ‘invisible’ communicative actions, non-cooperation and nonviolent intervention creating structures of parallel self-government. The nonviolent civil resistance has been articulated in 7 areas of action with specific impacts and challenges

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