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Ukraine’s chief oppositionist asks fellow-fighters to observe truce till Saturday

January 24, 2014, 2:54 UTC+3 KIEV
“I’m asking for truce till tomorrow because we need talks to avoid bloodletting,” Klichko said
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© ITAR-TASS/Eugenii Maloletka

KIEV, January 24, 2:20 /ITAR-TASS/. Leader of Ukraine’s oppositionist UDAR party, Vitaly Klichko, has called on the activists and allies of opposition forces deployed on the downtown Grushevsky Street to maintain truce till Saturday.

“I’m asking for truce till tomorrow because we need talks to avoid bloodletting,” Klichko said. “I realize that’s difficult. Resignation of the president and the government remains our immediate goal, and that’s the first round of negotiations.”

Ukrainian Justice Minister Yelena Lukash said earlier the talks would continue Friday or Saturday. She, too, took part in the four-hours-long meeting between President Viktor Yanukovich and the oppositionists - Vitaly Klichko, the former parliament speaker Arseny Yatsenyuk, and the leader of the far-right nationalistic Svoboda party, Oleg Tyagnybok.

Other officials present at the conference table were Andrei Kliuyev, the Secretary of the National Security Council, and Andrei Portnov, a presidential adviser.

Lukash said that the opposition leaders had once again refused to denounce the actions of extremists or the seizures of buildings of regional and local agencies of power committed by agitated crowds in a number of western and central regions of the country on Thursday.

Nor did the leading oppositionists give a clear answer to whether or not they were going - or were able - to take control of the haphazard course of events unfolding in Kiev.

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