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Heavy casualties in police-protester clashes in Ukraine

English.news.cn   2014-01-20 16:13:38

KIEV, Jan. 20 (Xinhua) -- At least 70 police officers were injured in violent clashes with anti-government protesters in central Kiev on Sunday and early Monday, said the Ukrainian Interior Ministry.

There was no immediate word on casualties among protesters, but local media estimated that around 100 people were hurt.

The Interior Ministry said 10 protesters, including members of radical opposition parties, were detained overnight for organizing mass riots. In Ukraine, organization of mass riots is a serious criminal offense which means a prison term of up to 15 years.

Thousands of demonstrators attacked riot police with sticks, fireworks and smoke bombs during the clashes. A group of masked protesters reportedly torched six police vehicles.

Police used water cannons, tear gas and reportedly rubber bullets against demonstrators.

The two-month-old political demonstrations, which had been largely peaceful, have turned violent after the parliament on Thursday approved legislation limiting demonstrations.

The political unrest was triggered by a government decision to put on hold an association agreement with the European Union and opt for closer relations with Russia.

Related:

Clashes erupt in Ukraine as protesters attack police

KIEV, Jan. 19 (Xinhua) -- Ukraine's anti-government protests turned violent on Sunday as thousands of demonstrators attacked riot police with sticks, fireworks and smoke bombs in central Kiev, according to local media.

Protesters reportedly tried to overturn a police bus and torched an interior forces vehicle, meeting with strong resistance from police armed with stun grenades, tear gas and water cannons. Full story

White House threatens sanctions against Ukraine

WASHINGTON, Jan. 19 (Xinhua) -- The White House threatened on Sunday to slap sanctions on Ukraine "in response to its use of violence" against protesters.

"The U.S. will continue to consider additional steps -- including sanctions -- in response to the use of violence," National Security Council spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden said in a statement. Full story

Editor: chengyang
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