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Violence escalates in Ukraine killing at least 25 people Updated: 2014-02-19 21:49:15 KST

  Violence escalates in Ukraine killing at least 25 people
Clashes between riot police and protesters in the capital of Ukraine have resulted in the deaths of at least 25 people, with 241 others suffering injuries, according to the health ministry.
It's the worst outbreak of violence since demonstrations erupted against President Viktor Yanukovich 12 weeks ago.
On Tuesday, Ukrainian police charged thousands of protesters at the capital's Independence Square, using rubber bullets, smoke and stun grenades.
Earlier, the authorities had set protesters an early deadline to leave the area or face "tough measures".
The demonstrators responded by throwing petrol bombs, fireworks and stones at police.

Opposition leader Vitaly Klitschko had told women and children to leave the central square, but he urged some 25-thousand protesters to defend the camp, saying they were there to stay.

Tuesday's events erupted after demonstrators attempted to march on parliament demanding constitutional reform.

"Unfortunately, there seems to be no progress being made regarding the matter. We have proposed a constitutional amendment, which hasn't even been submitted."

Klitschko held emergency talks with President Yanukovich's office early Wednesday, however he returned to the central Kiev square without any agreement on ending the violence.

Following the meeting, President Yanukovich said in a statement that the protestors were to blame for the deadly violence and called on opposition leaders to distance themselves from radical forces.
The international community has called on both sides to show restraint, with the U.S. saying it was ''appalled'' by the violence.

Paul Yi, Arirang News.
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