At least 11 dead as Kiev clashes renew

2014-02-20 12:43
Protesters carry a wounded protester during clashes with polie, after gaining new positions near the Independence square in Kiev. (Louisa Gouliamaki, AFP)

Protesters carry a wounded protester during clashes with polie, after gaining new positions near the Independence square in Kiev. (Louisa Gouliamaki, AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

kalahari.com

Kiev - Fierce clashes between police and protesters in Ukraine's capital have erupted anew on Thursday and an Associated Press reporter has seen 10 bodies laid out on the edge of the protest encampment.

One policeman was killed and 28 suffered gunshot wounds on Thursday, Interior Ministry spokesperson Serhiy Burlakov told The Associated Press.

As the violence explodes and heavy smoke from burning barricades at the encampment belches into the sky, the foreign ministers of three European countries are meeting with President Viktor Yanukovych, according to a presidential aide.

Earlier on Thursday, a French Embassy spokesperson said the meeting was cancelled for security reasons, but a top Yanukovych aide later said the meeting was underway.

The two sides are locked in a battle over the identity of this nation of 46 million, whose loyalties are divided between Russia and the West, and parts of the country are in open revolt against the central government.

Gunfire

The latest bout of street violence began on Tuesday when protesters attacked police lines and set fires outside parliament, accusing Yanukovych of ignoring their demands to enact constitutional reforms that would limit the president's power - a key opposition demand.

Parliament, dominated by his supporters, was stalling on taking up a constitutional reform to limit presidential powers.

In a statement published early on Thursday, the Ukrainian Health Ministry said 28 people have died and 287 have been hospitalised during the two days of street violence. Protesters, who have set up a medical care facility in a downtown cathedral, say the numbers are significantly higher.

A statement from the Interior Ministry on Thursday said the gunfire against officers appeared to be coming from the national music conservatory, which is on the edge of the downtown square housing an extensive protest tent camp.

Also Thursday, the parliament building was evacuated because of fears protesters were preparing to storm it, said parliament spokesperson Irina Karnelyuk.

The renewed clashes despite the declaration of truce follow days of violence, the most deadly since protests kicked off three months ago after Yanukovych shelved an association agreement with the European Union in favour of closer ties with Russia.

After Yanukovych shelved the agreement with the EU, Russia announced a $15bn bailout for Ukraine, whose economy is in tatters.

No compromise

The ongoing violence on the square on Thursday indicates that more radical elements among the protesters may be unwilling to observe the truce and may not be mollified by the prospects of negotiations.

Although the initial weeks of protests were determinedly peaceful, radicals helped drive an outburst of clashes with police in January in which at least three people died, and the day of violence on Tuesday may have radicalised many more.

Political and diplomatic manoeuvring has continued, with both Moscow and the West eager to gain influence over this former Soviet republic.

Three EU foreign ministers - from Germany, France and Poland - are in Kiev on Thursday speaking with both sides before an emergency EU meeting in Brussels to consider sanctions against those responsible for the recent violence in Ukraine.

President Barack Obama also stepped in to condemn the violence, warning Wednesday "there will be consequences" for Ukraine if it continues. The U.S. has raised the prospect of joining with the EU to impose sanctions against Ukraine.

Russia's Foreign Ministry, meanwhile, described the violence as an attempted coup and even used the phrase "brown revolution", an allusion to the Nazi rise to power in Germany in 1933. The ministry said Russia would use "all our influence to restore peace and calm".

Neither side had appeared willing to compromise, with the opposition insisting on Yanukovych's resignation and an early election and the president apparently prepared to fight until the end.

- AP

Read more on:    eu  |  viktor yanukovych  |  ukraine  |  ukraine protests
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
13 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
 

Zuma: Pray for peaceful polls

President Jacob Zuma has asked members of the Universal Church of the Kingdom of God to pray for peaceful elections on 7 May.

 
 

Latest elections multimedia

Why Jack Parow wants you to vote on 7 May
The ad the SABC doesn't want to air
Elections 2014 in one cartoon
This year's election posters
 
Traffic
Lottery
 
  • Saturday Cape Town - 10:57 AM
    Road name: M3 Inbound
    EVENT - left lane closed between Rhodes Avenue and UCT
  • Saturday Constantia - 07:19 AM
    Road name: Rhodes Drive Both Ways
    ROAD CLOSED between Constantia Nek and Canterbury Road until 1300
 
More traffic reports...
 

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Escape winter, head to Mauritius

Escape winter by spending 7 nights in Mauritius' tropical bliss from R13 215 per person sharing. Includes return flights, airport transfers and accommodation. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Get many eggs in one basket!

Gaming bundles: 2 Super Hits games for R99, 3 Disney games for R99 and more + exclusive accessory bundles only available on kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

25% off bestselling books!

The Real Meal Revolution by Tim Noakes, Jeffrey Archer’s Be Careful What You Wish for, Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor E. Frank and many more titles. Shop now!

Up to 25% off electronics

Buy top electronics and save up to 25%. Such as kalahari.com’s 1# selling product the gobii eReader, Patriot X Porter flash drive, Asus Nexus 7” 3G tablet, Samsung Galaxy SIII, Lenovo G580 Notebook and many more. Shop now!

DStv HD PVR Decoder now R949

The DStv HD PVR Decoder has further revolutionised the television experience with lifelike viewing, sharper images, more vibrant colours and precision picture quality. Now R949, save R550. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 30% off appliances & homeware

Save up to 30% on appliances and homeware this Easter! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now.

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Apple iPad 2 White 16GB 9.7" Tablet With WiFi & 3G

Two cameras for FaceTime and HD video recording. The dual-core...

From R5727.00

I'm shopping for:

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Self-indulgence may be strong today. You may want to enjoy yourself to the fullest and share it with those that make you feel...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.