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Some 30 wounded in blast outside Ukraine parliament

August 31, 2015, 13:55 UTC+3
Scuffles broke out on Monday between protesters and police outside the parliament’s building in downtown Kiev
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Police in Kiev (archive)

Police in Kiev (archive)

© Maxim Nikitin/TASS

KIEV, August 31. /TASS/. A powerful explosion has occurred outside the building of Ukraine’s parliament in downtown Kiev and around 30 people have been injured, a TASS correspondent reports from the scene.

The ambulances sent to be explosion scene are not enough for all the injured people. Police vehicles have joined the effort to take the wounded persons to hospitals.

Earlier reports said an unknown man had thrown a ball grenade at the police cordon near the building.

Some five or seven people have received serious injuries, while the others have sustained moderately severe wounds, local media reports say.

The clashes outside the parliament building have not ended, and activists are throwing smoke bombs at police. The central square is covered with heavy smoke.

More than 3,000 Ukrainians protesting the adoption of amendments to the country’s constitution on decentralization have been picketing the Verkhovna Rada building.

Earlier in the day, activists blocked traffic near the parliament building on the central Grushevskogo Street. Police had warned the protesters of the responsibility for such actions and took steps to restore traffic.

On Monday, Ukraine’s Verkhovna Rada passed in the first reading the amendments to the country’s constitution on decentralization. These amendments proposed by President Petro Poroshenko were supported by 265 lawmakers, above a required minimum of 226 votes. A total of 87 MPs voted against the amendments.

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