40 in Hospital after Clashes with Riot Police in Kiev

World | November 30, 2013, Saturday // 10:50|  views

Violent clashes occurred Friday night in Kiev as Berkut, the special units of the Ukrainian police, dispersed pro-EU demonstrators. Photo EPA/BGNES

Forty pro-EU demonstrators have been listed in the hospital overnight after clashes with riot police.

The information comes from eyewitnesses, quoted by the Ukrainian TV Channel 5 and the Bulgarian Focus Agency.

Special police forces proceeded Friday evening to forcefully push out of the central square thousands of pro-EU protesters.

"The square was cleared savagely. Dozens are hurt and dozens are in custody. This is unprecedented. Ukraine has never seen such thing," said Opposition MP Andriy Shevchenko.

This was the seventh night in a row when thousands of citizens and university students staged rallies in the Ukrainian capital against President Viktor Yanukovych's refusal to sign the association agreement with the EU.

The BBC correspondent in Kiev reports that by morning no protesters remained on the square.

Ukraine made the decision on the EU deal over a week ago, saying it could not afford to break ties with Moscow. Russia is trying to bring Kiev into its own customs union.

The signing of the association agreement was set for November 29 in the Lithuanian capital Vilnius.

On Friday - as Yanukovych attended the EU summit - about 10 000 demonstrators took to Independence Square, carrying Ukrainian and EU flags and chanting "Ukraine is Europe".

There was also a smaller rally of Yanukovich supporters a few hundred meters away.

In Vilnius, EU leaders warned they would not tolerate Russian interference in the bloc's relations with former Soviet republics.

The summit reached provisional accords with Georgia and Moldova.

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Tags: university students, Association Agreement, president, Viktor Yanukovych, Kiev, Ukraine, EU, European Union, protest, clashes, riot police


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