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Ukraine PM appeals for unity after Odessa tragedy
Ukraine PM appeals for unity after Odessa tragedy

Ukraine PM appeals for unity after Odessa tragedy

Ukraine’s prime minister on Sunday visited the city where a horrific blaze killed dozens of pro-Russian demonstrators during political riots – seeking to defuse mounting tensions by calling the deaths a “tragedy for all Ukraine.” Reorts AP.
Arseniy Yatsenyuk said police were being investigated for their failure to maintain order in Friday’s violence, while hinting strongly that he sees Moscow’s hand in the events.
“This is not a tragedy only for Odessa,” Yatsenyuk said. “This is a tragedy for all Ukraine.” The prime minister said he has charged prosecutors with “finding all instigators, all organizers and all those that under Russian leadership began a deadly attack on Ukraine and Odessa.”
More than 40 people died in the unrest – some from gunshot wounds, but most in a fire that tore through a trade union building.
Odessa is the major city between the Crimean peninsula, which Russia annexed in March, and the Moldovan separatist region of Trans-Dniester where Russia has a military peacekeeping contingent. Concerns are mounting that Russia ultimately aims to take control of a huge swath of Ukraine from Trans-Dniester to the east.
Yatsenyuk’s visit came as Ukrainian authorities renewed their push to quell a pro-Russian insurgency in the east. Interior Minister Arsen Avakov said in a statement on his Facebook page that an “antiterrorist operation” was being executed in the eastern city of Kramatorsk, the latest flashpoint for unrest. “The operation was carried out by fighters of the National Guard and the armed forces. The active phase resumed at dawn. We will not stop,” Avakov wrote.
The city saw a standoff Saturday that culminated in pro-Russian insurgents setting buses alight to ward off attacks. Russian state television has reported 10 deaths, including two among government forces, during clashes in Kramatorsk so far. Those figures could not be independently confirmed.
By midday Sunday, however, there was little sign of movement, from either government or insurgents on the ground.

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