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Death Toll Rises to 25 in Renewed Kiev Clashes  Join our daily free Newsletter

MENAFN - Qatar News Agency - 20/02/2014

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(MENAFN - Qatar News Agency) Death toll climbed to at least 25 people in renewed clashes between police and anti-government protesters in the Ukrainian capital Kiev.

More than 240 were also injured in the renewed clashes, health officials said

The new attempt to uproot the protest stronghold came as Ukranian President Yanukovych blamed opposition leaders for the worst violence in months of unrest

After failed overnight talks, he said that he had already made several attempts to compromise but that opponents "crossed a line when they called people to arms"

Yanukovych said opposition leaders had to "draw a boundary between themselves and radical forces", or else "acknowledge that they are supporting radicals"

The latest clashes took place in the Independence Square, also known as the Maidan

Several tents were set ablaze, and water cannon was later used

The protests began in late November, when President Viktor Yanukovych rejected a landmark association and trade deal with the EU in favour of closer ties with Russia

Tensions had begun to subside as recently as Monday, as protesters ended their occupation of government buildings in return for an amnesty against prosecution

But violence erupted outside parliament on Tuesday morning as government supporters blocked opposition attempts to scale back the president's constitutional powers

The clashes spread to surrounding streets and police launched a first attack on Independence Square on Tuesday evening

In a statement, the health ministry said on Wednesday the number of dead on both sides had risen to 25

Nine of those killed were police, the interior ministry says

A journalist has also died

Hundreds of people have been treated in hospital for injuries and there are fears the number of deaths could rise still further

Explosions are taking place, fireworks are being thrown and large fires can been seen.

 






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