News / Europe

    Ukrainian Police, Protesters Clash

    • Pro-European Union activists shout as they listen to Ukranian opposition leader Oleh Tyahnybok, during a rally in the Independence Square in Kyiv, Ukraine, Dec. 13, 2013.
    • People pass by a barricade erected by pro-European integration protesters in central Kyiv, Dec. 13, 2013.
    • Pro-European Union musicians perform in Independence Square in Kyiv, Ukraine, Dec. 13, 2013.
    • People pick up food inside the Kyiv City Council building which is occupied by pro-European integration protesters, Dec. 13, 2013.
    • Pro-European Union activists warm themselves near a bonfire and guard barricades on the main street Khreschatyk in Kyiv, Dec. 12, 2013.
    • Interior Ministry personnel block a street in central Kyiv, Dec. 12, 2013.
    • Pro-European integration protesters warm themselves by a fire in Independence Square in Kyiv, Dec. 12, 2013.
    • Tents and belongings of pro-European integration protesters are seen near Independence Square in Kyiv, Dec. 11, 2013.
    • Riot police pull pro-European Union activists out from their camp in Independence Square in Kyiv, Dec. 11, 2013.
    • Pro-European integration protesters standing behind barricades confront a line of riot police approaching at Independence Square in Kyiv, Dec. 11, 2013.
    • Pro-European integration protesters line up in front of riot police in Kyiv, Dec. 11, 2013.
    • Riot police leave a bus after protesters threw a smoke bomb, outside City Hall in Kyiv, Dec. 11, 2013.
    Protests in Kyiv
    VOA News
    Ukrainian police have clashed with anti-government protesters at Kyiv's city hall in an effort to drive the activists from the building.

    Reports from the Ukrainian capital say the protesters fought back by spraying water from fire hoses at the baton-wielding police.  

    The clash came just hours after hundreds of Ukrainian police began storming a protest encampment in central Kyiv early Wednesday, clashing with the demonstrators and ripping down their makeshift tent city.

    The U.S. State Department issued a statement expressing "disgust" with the actions of Ukrainian authorities for introducing bulldozers and riot police armed with batons to the scene, rather than, in the words of Secretary of State John Kerry, "respect for democratic rights and human dignity."

    Kerry said that "respect for democratic principles, including freedom of assembly" is fundamental to the United States' approach to Ukraine. He said these values are universal, not just American. He called for "utmost restraint" and said human life must be protected.

    U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland met with Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych Wednesday and told reporters afterwards that she told him such clashes were unacceptable.

    "I made it absolutely clear to him that what happened last night, what has been happening in security terms here, is absolutely impermissible in a European state, in a democratic state," Nuland told reporters.

    WATCH - Remarks by U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland in Ukraine:

    Remarks by U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland in Ukrainei
    X
    December 11, 2013 4:08 PM
    U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland met with Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych Wednesday and told reporters afterwards that she told Yanukovych such clashes were unacceptable.

    Nuland expressed optimism that a solution was close at hand, telling reporters that Yanukovych "knows what he needs to do."

    Also Wednesday, Nuland handed out sandwiches to both protestors and police in Kiev's Independence Square following the overnight face-off between protesters and riot police.

    On Tuesday,  European Union foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton and U.S. Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland met in the capital with senior government and opposition leaders in a push to ease the crisis. Later, Ashton walked through the square to view the protests and speak with reporters.

    Earlier Tuesday, Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych met with three former Ukrainian presidents, launching so-called round table talks reportedly aimed at the same objective.

    The protests began in late November, after the Ukrainian president backed away from a long-anticipated trade deal with the European Union, in favor of repairing and improving economic and political ties with Russia.

    In a nationally televised address Tuesday following his meeting with his predecessors, Mr. Yanukovych called for the release of protesters arrested after a violent police crackdown November 30.  He said good relations with both Russia and the European Union are necessary to protect the country's interests.

    Moscow is seeking to form a trade bloc of former Soviet republics and satellite countries to rival the European Union, and has in recent months exerted strong economic pressure on its impoverished neighbor to scuttle the EU deal.

    Earlier this year, it imposed restrictions on goods from Ukraine, cutting Ukrainian exports by 25 percent and dragging the country into recession.

    Russia is Ukraine's largest foreign investor, trading partner and chief natural gas supplier.  Moscow is reported to be dangling a deal with Ukraine that includes a $9 billion annual discount on gas pipeline shipments.

    Analysts say Kyiv, which has also secured recent investment deals with China, still needs about $18 billion in outside help to pay government debt and meet energy payments to Russia by early 2014.

    You May Like

    Mother of IS Supporter: Son Was Peaceful, 'Role Model'

    Somali-American Abdirizak Mohamed Warsame pleaded guilty Thursday to charges of conspiring to provide material support to Islamic State militants

    Factions Shift as Civilians Die in Syrian War

    Scenario likely only to further confuse military situation on ground and potentially worsen humanitarian crisis that already has grown to epic proportions

    Presidential Hopefuls Woo Minorities, Evangelicals

    Four GOP candidates to speak at forum at Bob Jones University in Greenville, South Carolina

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Two-thirds of World Faces Water Shortagei
    X
    February 12, 2016 7:31 PM
    Four billion people — or two out of every three on the planet — do not have enough water to meet their basic needs. That is far greater than previously thought, according to a new study that presents a more accurate picture of the problem. As VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports, the findings will help policymakers and the public craft solutions to address the threat.
    Video

    Video Two-thirds of World Faces Water Shortage

    Four billion people — or two out of every three on the planet — do not have enough water to meet their basic needs. That is far greater than previously thought, according to a new study that presents a more accurate picture of the problem. As VOA's Rosanne Skirble reports, the findings will help policymakers and the public craft solutions to address the threat.
    Video

    Video Gateway to Mecca: Historical Old Jeddah

    Local leader Sami Nawar's family has been in the Old City of Jeddah for hundreds of years and takes us on a tour of this ancient route to Mecca, also believed to be the final resting place of Adam's wife, Eve.
    Video

    Video New Technology Aims to Bring Election Transparency to Uganda

    A team of recent graduates from Uganda’s Makerere University has created a mobile application designed to help monitor elections and expose possible rigging. The developers say the app, called E-Poll, will make Uganda's democratic process fairer. From Kampala, VOA's Serginho Roosblad reports.
    Video

    Video As Refugees Perish, Greek Graveyards Fill

    Aid workers on the Greek island of Lesbos say they are struggling to bury the increasing number of bodies of refugees that have been recovered or washed up ashore in recent months.  The graveyards are all full, they say, yet as tens of thousands of people clamor to get out of Syria, it is clear refugees will still be coming in record numbers. For VOA, Hamada Elrasam reports from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video Russia Bristles at NATO Expansion in E. Europe

    Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov is meeting Friday with the head of NATO after the Western military alliance and the United States announced plans for the biggest military build-up in Europe since the Cold War. Russia has called NATO's moves a threat to stability in Europe. But NATO says the troop rotations and equipment are aimed at reassuring allies concerned about Russia as VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
    Video

    Video To Fight Zika, Scientists Target Mosquitoes

    Mosquitoes strike again. The Zika virus outbreak is just the latest headline-grabbing epidemic carried by these biting pests, but researchers are fighting back with new ways to control them. VOA's Steve Baragona takes a look.
    Video

    Video Mosul Refugees Talk About Life Under IS

    A top U.S. intelligence official told Congress this week that a planned Iraqi-led operation to re-take the city of Mosul from Islamic State militants is unlikely to take place this year. IS took over the city in June 2014, and for the past year and a half, Mosul residents have been held captive under its rule. VOA's Zana Omar talked to some families who managed to escape. Bronwyn Benito narrates his report.
    Video

    Video Scientists Make Progress Toward Better Diabetes Treatment, Cure

    Scientists at two of the top U.S. universities say they have made significant advances in their quest to find a more efficient treatment for diabetes and eventually a cure. According to the International Diabetes Federation, the disease affects more than 370 million people worldwide. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video NATO to Target Migrant Smugglers

    NATO has announced plans to send warships to the Aegean Sea to target migrant smugglers in the alliance's most direct intervention so far since a wave of people began trying to reach European shores.
    Video

    Video Russia's Catholics, Orthodox Hopeful on Historic Pope-Patriarch Meeting

    Russia's Catholic minority has welcomed an historic first meeting Friday in Cuba between the Pope and the Patriarch of Russia's dominant Orthodox Church. The Orthodox Church split with Rome in 1054 and analysts say politics, both church and state, have been driving the relationship in the centuries since. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Moscow.
    Video

    Video Used Books Get a New Life on the Streets of Lagos

    Used booksellers are importing books from abroad and selling them on the streets of Africa's largest city. What‘s popular with readers may surprise you. Chris Stein reports from Lagos.
    Video

    Video After NH Primaries All Eyes on South Carolina

    After Tuesday's primary in New Hampshire, US presidential candidates swiftly turned to the next election coming up in South Carolina. The so-called “first-in-the-South” poll may help further narrow down the field of candidates. Zlatica Hoke reports.
    Video

    Video Smartphone Helps Grow Vegetables

    One day, you may be using your smartphone to grow your vegetables. A Taipei-based company has developed a farm cube — a small, enclosed ecosystem designed to grow plants indoors. The environment inside is automatically adjusted by the cube, but it can also be controlled through an app. VOA's Deborah Block has more on the gardening system.
    Video

    Video Exhibit Turns da Vinci’s Drawings Into Real Objects

    In addition to being a successful artist, Renaissance genius Leonardo da Vinci designed many practical machines, some of which are still in use today, although in different forms. But a number of his projects were never realized — until today. VOA’s George Putic reports.