Irate Kiev Protesters Rip Down Lenin Statue

Ukraine again sees mass protests against closer Russia ties
By Polly Davis Doig,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 8, 2013 10:53 AM CST
Pro-EU activists gather around a huge poster of jailed former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko, bottom, during a rally in the Independence Square in KIev, Ukraine, Sunday, Dec. 8, 2013.   (Sergei Grits)
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(Newser) – Hundreds of thousands of angry anti-government protesters gathered for a third Sunday in a row in Kiev, this time ripping down a landmark statue of Vladimir Lenin and decapitating it in protest of the Ukraine's move toward Russia and away from the EU, reports the BBC. Chants of "Glory to Ukraine" went up, reports the AP, even as protesters beat the statue with sledgehammers. In a further sign of how rapidly the situation could be deteriorating, Ukraine officials said they were investigating politicians on "actions aimed at seizing state power."

"We are on a razor's edge between a final plunge into cruel dictatorship and a return home to the European community," jailed opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko told supporters in a statement. "Don't give in, not a step back, don't give up, the future of Ukraine is in your hands." Her party is urging protesters to "chase" President Viktor Yanukovych "until he falls."

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