Photo — by Volodymyr Petrov
People gather around a rocket on display in Kyiv as part of an exhibition of Russian weapons captured in the Donbas during battles in the east of Ukraine.
An exhibition of Russian weapons captured from separatist and Russian forces during battles in the east of Ukraine opened in Kyiv on Feb. 21. The exhibition called "Presence" aims to prove Russian military involvement in Ukraine.
The continued fighting in eastern Ukraine has made a mockery of the West's latest attempts to negotiate a cease-fire, but may ultimately pave the way for a more durable peace, analysts say.
On Feb. 17, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said that the alliance had evidence Russia is helping fighters of the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Luhansk people's republics. On Feb. 18, the British embassy released photos of 96K6 Pantsir-S1 surface-to-air missile systems spotted in a number of eastern Ukrainian cities, including Shakhtarsk and Donetsk, via its social media pages. The complex Russian equipment can only be operated by highly trained regular forces.
Ukraine's Defense Minister Stepan Poltorak showed up at the exhibition and said that Ukraine is permanently strengthening its defense. Poltorak also hopes that foreign partners will provide aid to the country.
"Russia has brought a lot of equipment [to militants]," Poltorak said in Kyiv on Feb. 21. "They brought enough to arm a small European state."
Ukraine's President Petro Poroshenko had earlier shown Russian passports taken from Russian soldiers to demonstrate the presence of Russian troops in the country while speaking at Munich Security Conference on Feb. 7.
A girl looks on as Ukrainian president Petro Poroshenko and top officials from the EU light candles during a public prayer, part of the 'March of Dignity' on Feb. 22 in Kyiv.
Poroshenko showed European leaders Russia-supplied weapons from Donbas
Dignity March in commemoration of those killed in the Euromaidan events a year ago in downtown Kyiv was held in Ukraine's capital on Sunday.
Many European leaders, including Polish President Bronislaw Komorowski, Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaite, Slovak President Andrej Kiska, European Council President Donald Tusk.