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Ukraine turmoil LIVE UPDATES

Published time: February 18, 2014 15:03
Edited time: April 28, 2014 12:27
A flag in the colours of the Ribbon of Saint George, which has become a symbol of anti-goverment sentiment, flutters as anti-goverment supporters gather outside the mayor's office in Slaviansk April 18, 2014 (Reuters / Gleb Garanich)

A flag in the colours of the Ribbon of Saint George, which has become a symbol of anti-goverment sentiment, flutters as anti-goverment supporters gather outside the mayor's office in Slaviansk April 18, 2014 (Reuters / Gleb Garanich)

The four-side Geneva treaty on de-escalating tension in Ukraine has been adopted as a road map for resolving the crisis. Promising to adhere to the agreement, Kiev demands that anti-government protesters in eastern Ukraine must be the first to follow it.

Thursday, May 15

13:23 GMT:

The anti-government protesters have gathered in front of the Ukrainian Parliament (Verkhovna Rada), demanding the resignation of coup-appointed President Aleksandr Turchinov from the position of the speaker.

13:05 GMT:

The supporters of Ukraine presidential hopeful, Pyotr Poroshenko (UDAR Party), have attempted to attack the campaign headquarters of Yulia Timoshenko, another presidential candidate from the Batkivshchina (Fatherland) party, said a party official. He added that members of the local and city internal ministry tried to enter the HQ under “false pretenses” with the aim of hijacking the Batkivshchina party’s newspaper.

12:31 GMT:

The number of Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe observers will rise to 300 people in Ukraine, says the head of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine, Ambassador Ertugrul Apakan.

In two months, the number of the OSCE observers will increase up to 500, he told the Itar-Tass news agency.

Tuesday, May 13

11:48 GMT:

Russia’s investigative committee has started a preliminary investigation into the case of Ukrainian presidential candidate and leader of the Radical Party, Oleg Lyashko, who reportedly attempted to take two pupils from boarding school in the Crimean city of Yalta on "a holiday" in Turkey in July 2012. According to the committee, the children, 12 and 14 years old, who are now Russian citizens, might have been abused by the candidate.

10:42 GMT:

China sees the direct cause of the Ukrainian political crisis in the armed coup that ousted the country’s legitimate government, China’s Vice Foreign Minister Cheng Guoping told Russian media. The diplomat added that Western countries “played a negative part” in those events and is now using double standards towards the developing crisis.

“Since Ukraine declared independence it has been looking for ways to develop according to its national characteristics. But at the same time foreign influence, first of all that of the US and Western countries, which are trying to make Ukraine follow the path towards Western-style democracy, cannot be ignored,” The Chinese official noted.

10:30 GMT:

The future of Ukraine’s political system should be discussed before the May 25 presidential election, Moscow believes. Russia expects the OSCE, the EU and the US to put leverage on Kiev to start discussion of this issue soon, the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

The ministry added that “the unwillingness of the current Kiev authorities to start a real dialogue with representatives of regions, first of all in south and east, is a major stumbling block on the path to de-escalation and promoting civil reconciliation in Ukraine.”

Saturday, May 10

14:13 GMT:

The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) will provide Ukraine with loan guarantees of up to $1 billion. The notification containing the conditions for granting the guarantees will be published in the US Federal Register on Monday. The guarantees came into force on May 9.

Wednesday, May 7

04:47 GMT:

The deaths of protesters in Odessa last Friday were a terrorist act, said Ukrainian MP and presidential candidate Petr Poroshenko. He told during a closed-door parliament session on Tuesday said MPs had been presented with proof that the people who died in the Trade Union House torched by radical pro-Kiev activists were killed by a toxic gas. He didn’t identify the gas used, however.

The majority of victims of large fires die not from the fire itself but rather due to inhaling toxic smoke, and it was generally thought that this was the case for those found dead in Odessa. But after the scale of the tragedy became clear, claims that colored smoke was seen in the building during the fire started to emerge on social media networks.

Previously, some Ukrainian officials claimed that the fire was caused by the anti-government protesters in the building, who allegedly mishandled their own Molotov cocktails. Yet video footage from the scene showed the crowd surrounding the building throwing Molotov cocktails at those inside.

The latest version of the events in Odessa voiced by the Ukrainian investigation puts the blame on the city’s police force, which failed to prevent or were accomplices to the clashes.

Tuesday, May 6

12:24 GMT:

Odessa hospitals are treating 78 people injured in the deadly clashes and fire on May 2, the city council said. Twenty-six of them are in serious condition and 17 are being treated in intensive therapy units.

The official count said 46 people were killed and more than 200 were injured Friday during violent clashes between radical pro-Kiev activists and anti-government protesters in Odessa.

Monday, May 5

21:07 GMT:

More than 7,000 Muscovites gathered at a war memorial at the Kremlin wall, in the heart of Moscow, to pay tribute to the Ukrainian men and women who fought against Nazism and to honor the victims of the Odessa tragedy.

Organized by Russia's Women's Union, participants also asked Ukrainian authorities to stop the bloodshed in the east of the country.

“Today, we have to demand the government in Kiev stops killing people,” Maria Bolshakova, a representative of the union, said.

A minute of silence was held at the Kremlin wall to honor the memory of victims in Odessa, Kramatorsk, and Slavyansk. Muscovites held flags depicting large St. George's Ribbons. At the end of the event, a flower reef was laid next to a "Hero city of Odessa" memorial in Alexandrovsky Garden.

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