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20.01.2014

Ukraine's President Yanukovych in talks pledge after clashes

13:59, — Europa

Ukraine's President Yanukovych in talks pledge after clashes

Ukraine's President Viktor Yanukovych has agreed to negotiate with pro-EU protesters and opposition leaders after violent clashes in the capital Kiev.

He said a cross-party commission would be set up on Monday to try to resolve the deepening crisis. Opposition leaders confirmed this.

Earlier, a group of protesters - trying to reach parliament - clashed with police. Dozens of people were injured.

The US and EU called for an end to the violence and urgent political talks, BBC reports.

The violence broke out as many thousands of protesters held a rally in Kiev's Independence Square, outraged by new laws which they said restricted basic freedoms.

The ruling party of Mr Yanukovych denies this, saying the legislature is in line with European standards.

However, Western countries have expressed deep concern at the new laws.

The anti-government movement began in protest at Mr Yanukovych's decision in late November to pull out of a landmark treaty with the EU, but has expanded to demand his resignation.

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