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Ukraine releases all jailed demonstrators, which was an opposition demand

Pro-European Union activists warm themselves near a bonfire in front of barricades toward the Independence Square in Kiev, Ukraine, Thursday, Dec. 12, 2013. Yanukovych appears to be in a tough corner. As protesters furious over his decision to turn away from the EU clog the center of Kiev, he appears to be leaving his options open for the best deal he can get from his economically troubled country’s powerful suitors. (AP Photo/Alexander Zemlianichenko)
December 13, 2013 - 2:57 AM

KIEV, Ukraine - A Ukrainian court has released all those arrested during a violent police dispersal of demonstrators near the presidential administration building, one of the demands of the opposition that has conducted three weeks of large protests.

An appeals court spokeswoman, Olga Chaplya, said the last of nine people arrested in the Dec. 1 clash was released on Friday, but the criminal cases against them continue.

The opposition had set the releases as a condition for entering talks with the government. It also wants government commitment to seek closer ties with the European Union.

President Viktor Yanukovych's refusal to sign the agreement set off the protests. Deputy Prime Minister Serhiy Arbuzov, after meeting with EU officials on Thursday, said Ukraine intends to sign soon, but that issues still must be worked out.

News from © The Associated Press, 2013
The Associated Press

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