Ex Boxing Champ Urges Pro-EU Protesters in Kiev to Not Give Up
Former heavyweight boxing champion, and now opposition leader, Vitali Klitschko, has urged pro-EU protesters in Ukraine's capital Kiev to not give up.
Klitschko, who leads the opposition Ukrainian Democratic Alliance for Reform party (UDAR - Smash), has joined the demonstrators once again Tuesday morning telling them to keep fighting for the future of European Ukraine and to relentlessly pressure archenemy, President Viktor Yanukovych, to sign the association agreement with the EU.
"People, who are not afraid; who don't just sit around; who fight for their future; they are the only ones who can win. There is no victory without fight and we will prove that Ukraine belongs to Europe," said he.
Meanwhile, opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko, who is in prison, announced she was beginning an indefinite hunger strike.
Ukraine made the decision on the EU deal last week, saying it could not afford to break ties with Moscow. Russia is trying to bring Kiev into its own customs union.
Several rallies in Kiev have been held over the last few days. Rallies have been reported also in the Black sea city of Odessa, in Lvov and other cities.
Outraged Ukrainians say they do not want their country to become Russian province again, and pledge to not give up the rallies until they receive assurances about the European future of their country.
Demonstrators remain on Maydan square, guarded by police.
New clashes with riot police took place overnight, hours after Yanukovych said that the decision to not sign the association agreement with the EU was not taken lightly and urged the demonstrators to calm down.
The signing had been set for November 29 in the Lithuanian capital Vilnius, where several other ex-Soviet states will forge closer ties with the EU.
In a joint statement the President of the European Council Herman Van Rompuy and the President of the European Commission Jose Manuel Barroso said the door to the EU is still open for Ukraine and the association agreement was on the table.
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