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    Ukrainian Official: Protesters Shot Under Yanukovych's Orders

    Ukraine's acting interior minister has alleged that the killing of protesters in Kyiv took place under the orders of ousted president Viktor Yanukovych.

    The government also announced Thursday the detention of 12 members of an elite riot police unit on suspicion of shooting protesters. More than 100 people were killed during unrest in Kyiv in February.

    Meanwhile, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov says troops near the Ukrainian border will return to their permanent bases as soon as they finish military exercises.

    Ukrainian officials have said as many as 100,000 Russian soldiers along its eastern and southern borders are poised to invade.

    NATO's top commander, General Philip Breedlove, said Wednesday the Russian force is "ready to go" and could take over large parts of Ukraine in a little as three days.

    Lavrov Thursday called on the West and Ukraine to de-escalate the rhetoric, which he says is becoming unreasonable.

    He is also asking NATO for answers on its plans to beef up defenses in Eastern Europe -- a direct response to the Russian takeover of Ukraine's Crimean peninsula.

    NATO foreign ministers also announced they will officially end all civilian and military cooperation with Russia. The ministers say they do not recognize the annexation of Crimea and urged Moscow to immediately comply with international law.

    Moscow accuses NATO of reverting to Cold War rhetoric.

    Mr. Yanukovych, who fled Kyiv in February after months of anti-government protests, said Wednesday he was "wrong" to invite Russian troops into Ukraine's Crimean peninsula.

    In his first interview since he sought refuge in Russia, Mr. Yanukovych told the Associated Press and Russian NTV television that he will try to persuade Moscow to return the territory to Ukrainian control.

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    Brexit Vote Plunges Global Markets Into Unchartered Territoryi
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    June 24, 2016 9:38 PM
    British voters plunged global markets into unknown territory after they voted Thursday to leave the European Union. The results of the Brexit vote, the term coined to describe the referendum, caught many off guard. Analysts say the resulting volatility could last for weeks, perhaps longer. Mil Arcega reports.
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    Video Brexit Vote Plunges Global Markets Into Unchartered Territory

    British voters plunged global markets into unknown territory after they voted Thursday to leave the European Union. The results of the Brexit vote, the term coined to describe the referendum, caught many off guard. Analysts say the resulting volatility could last for weeks, perhaps longer. Mil Arcega reports.
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    Video Orlando Shooting Changes Debate on Gun Control

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    Historic battle re-enactment is a niche hobby with a fair number of adherents in Russia where past military victories are played-up by the Kremlin as a show of national strength. But, one group of World War II re-enactors in Moscow has the rare distinction of choosing to play western ally troops. VOA's Daniel Schearf explains.
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    Video Experts: Very Few Killed in US Gun Violence Are Victims of Mass Shootings

    The deadly shooting at a Florida nightclub has reignited the debate in the U.S. over gun control. Although Congress doesn't provide government health agencies funds to study gun violence, public health experts say private research has helped them learn some things about the issue. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
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    Video Trump Unleashes Broadside Against Clinton to Try to Ease GOP Doubts

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    Video Muslim American Mayor Calls for Tolerance

    Syrian-born Mohamed Khairullah describes himself as "an American mayor who happens to be Muslim." As the three-term mayor of Prospect Park, New Jersey, he believes his town of 6,000 is an example of how ethnicity and religious beliefs should not determine a community's leadership. Ramon Taylor has this report from Prospect Park.
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    Video Internal Rifts Over Syria Policy Could Be Headache for Next US President

    With the Obama administration showing little outward enthusiasm for adopting a more robust Syria policy, there is a strong likelihood that the internal discontent expressed by State Department employees will roll over to the next administration. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports.
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    Video Senegal to Park Colorful ‘Cars Rapide’ Permanently

    Brightly painted cars rapide are a hallmark of Dakar, offering residents a cheap way to get around the capital city since 1976. But the privately owned minibuses are scheduled to be parked for good in late 2018, as Ricci Shryock reports for VOA.
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    Video Florida Gets $1 Million in Emergency Government Funding for Orlando

    The U.S. government has granted $1 million in emergency funding to the state of Florida to cover the costs linked to the June 12 massacre in Orlando. U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch announced the grant Tuesday in Orlando, where she met with survivors of the shooting attack that killed 49 people. Zlatica Hoke reports.
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    Video Big Somali Community in Minnesota Observes Muslim Religious Feast

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