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January 25, 2014 16:30

Protesters piling up firearms at Kyiv City Administration building - Ukrainian interior minister (Part 2)

KYIV. Jan 25 (Interfax) - Ukrainian Interior Minister Vitaly Zakharchenko claims that the opposition is piling up firearms in the building of the Kyiv City Administration and that a conflict among different groups of protesters is worsening.

"The events of the last several days in the capital of Ukraine have shown that our attempts to resolve the conflict peacefully, without resorting to forcible confrontation, were futile. Our calls have not been heard, and the truce agreement has been broken," Zakharchenko said in a statement to the nation and foreign countries on Saturday.

"Information obtained by the law enforcement agencies indicates that firearms are being piled up at the Trade Unions House and the Kyiv City Administration building," Zakharchenko said.

Protesters have started again pelting police, who are not using force now as the negotiations are under way between the Ukrainian leadership and the opposition, with pavement blocks and Molotov cocktails, Zakharchenko said.

Moreover, leader of the Ukrainian Radical Party Oleh Lyashko has called on his supporters to attack police, he said.

"One policeman was shot dead to the head last night, and three other law enforcement officers were captured on Independence Square. One of them was seriously wounded and is in the hospital now, and the other two are still being held at the Kyiv City Administration building," he added.

The police's negotiations with the protest leaders and opposition parliamentarians have not produced the desired result, Zakharchenko said. "They can no longer influence the radical groups, who are controlling the buildings they have seized and resorting to force actions," he said.

"The opposition leaders have not disassociated themselves from the radical forces, but they are no longer capable of controlling them, and so they are exposing the citizens of Ukraine to danger," Zakharchenko said.

The international community "should not turn a blind eye" to these events, which are reaching "a high degree of extremism," he said.


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