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Protesters outside Ukraine’s parliament mount pressure on MPs to reform laws

October 19, 10:52 UTC+3 KIEV

Mass protests flared up outside the Ukrainian parliament in Kiev on Tuesday morning

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© EPA-EFE/STEPAN FRANKO

KIEV, October 19. /TASS/. Protesters outside Ukraine’s Verkhovna Rada have pledged they would not let the MPs leave the parliament building until they adopt laws on lifting lawmakers’ immunity, establishing the anti-corruption court and also amendments to the law on elections.

"After 4 p.m. the rally will continue and we should not release them [lawmakers] until they vote for the people’s will, but this should be done peacefully," said the leader of the Movement of New Forces, Mikhail Saakashvili.

Saakashvili, the former Georgian president and ex-Ukraine’s Odessa governor, visited the tent camp in the Mariinsky park, located in front of the parliament building, late on Wednesday.

The protesters will gather at 4 p.m. when the lawmakers are scheduled to consider these particular laws.

About 1,000 protesters are now outside the Verkhovna Rada. The situation is calm and the national police and National Guard forces are maintaining order. They have cordoned off the Mariinsky park.

Mass protests flared up outside the Ukrainian parliament in Kiev on Tuesday morning. Several opposition political forces organized the protests, including the Fatherland (Batkivshchyna), the Self Reliance (Samopomosch), the Movement of New Forces and the Right Sector (outlawed in Russia). Later they were joined by several MPs from the ruling Pyotr Poroshenko Bloc. Several clashes with police occurred during the protests.

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