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Ukraine on edge of revolution

December 02, 2013, 11:38 UTC+3 MOSCOW

Russian media focus on clashes between Ukraine’s opposition and the police, capture of administrative buildings and calling for overthrowing the power

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MOSCOW, December 02. /ITAR-TASS World Service /. The Russian media focus on clashes between Ukraine’s opposition and the police, capture of administrative buildings and calling for overthrowing the power as President Yanukovich refuses to sign the association agreement with the EU.

Kommersant daily writes Ukraine’s capital city is on the edge of a new revolution — not an “Orange” one and far from peaceful. The opposition’s protests, which featured between 150 and 400 thousand participants, on Sunday developed into a violent confrontation. Avant-garde teams headed by the nationalistic Svoboda (Freedom) captured several administrative buildings. Their main target was the presidential administration, but there they bumped into a rebuff from police commandos. The opposition’s leaders called on the people to begin a nation-wide strike to demand resignation of the government and president.

Over just one day the position of President Viktor Yanukovich from a very comfortable one turned into almost critical. It seems the authorities did not expect the situation in the capital city may become uncontrollable or the opposition, which had begun peaceful rallies for the European integration, may become so resolute and go so far.

Experts say the situation aggravated as the Berkut police forces dispersed the rally in Kiev’s central Independent Square (Maidan Nezalezhnosti). Yanukovich is losing his allies. Experts say as Rada’s deputies turned the corner, the president’s allies would not make a majority, and Nikolai Azarov’s government will be submitted to a vote of no confidence.

The positions of law enforcers would be also of importance, as Yanukovich has condemned the force used by the Berkut police forces against the rally participants.

Kommersant writes some of Yanukovich’s allies are for imposition of the state of emergency. However, MP Mikhail Chechetov of Ukraine’s ruling Party of Regions says the situation is under full control and will be settled by regular means. “Presently, we do not need to announce the state of emergency. But the entire responsibility for people’s security is on leaders of the opposition. They were smart enough to take people to streets, but now they are unable to handle the situation. It is their responsibility that among the crowd there were people with cold steel, sticks, stones and chains,” he told RBC daily.

“The opposition’s official leaders do not seek a revolution similar to that in Egypt’s Tahrir Square. Either they would not want to give good reasons to Yanukovich to announce the emergency situation, or they would not want Europe to consider them instigators of bloodshed. Most likely, they fit into the scenario of peaceful Maidan a la 2004. But it is quite a question whether they will be able to handle the crowd and the volatile youth fighting detachments, which are using methods far from those used nine years earlier,” Komsomolskaya Pravda writes.

Itar-Tass is not responsible for the material quoted in these press reviews

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