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Police Break Up Protesters' Barricades in Kiev

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Pro-EU Protests Erupt in Ukraine (177)
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Police moved in on protesters in Ukraine’s capital in the early hours of Tuesday, breaking up the last of their street barricades and driving the demonstrators into Kiev’s central square in an ongoing push to clear major protest sites.

KIEV/MOSCOW, December 10 (RIA Novosti) – Police moved in on protesters in Ukraine’s capital in the early hours of Tuesday, breaking up the last of their street barricades and driving the demonstrators into Kiev’s central square in an ongoing push to clear major protest sites.

Interior Ministry troops and riot police broke up protest barricades near Ukraine’s parliament and presidential administration building during the night, driving out several hundred protesters.

Police used shields and batons to dislodge the demonstrators from the sites while some protesters threw tear gas canisters at the troops, local news outlet Ukrainskaya Pravda reported.

About ten people were injured in the operation, according to Ukrainian online television station Hromadske.tv. Two of the injured were police, local news outlet Ukrainskaya Pravda reported, while at least one protester was also overcome by tear gas he said was used by the police, according to a BBC correspondent.

A RIA Novosti correspondent at the scene reported that at least 2,000 Interior Ministry troops and riot police officers were involved in the operation, though Ukrainskaya Pravda put police numbers at about 400.

No one was arrested in the operation, local media outlets reported.

Street protests have been taking place in Kiev and other Ukrainian cities since the government announced on November 21 that it would postpone signing free trade and association agreements with the EU in favor of strengthening ties with Moscow.

Thousands of protesters in Kiev barricaded a number of important state buildings and set up a tent camp in the central Independence Square in rallies to demand snap elections and the resignation of President Viktor Yanukovych.

Police shut down three central metro stations near the square at the heart of the capital's protests on Monday, citing an anonymous bomb threat. The stations were reopened for operation Tuesday morning.

 

Topic:
Pro-EU Protests Erupt in Ukraine (177)
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protests, Ukraine's Interior Ministry, Viktor Yanukovych
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