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Dramatic images of molotov cocktails and tear gas raining down on protesters in Kyiv
Tuesday, January 21st, 2014

An uneasy calm returned to the streets of the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv on Tuesday after two days of violent clashes between pro-EU protesters and riot police. But on Wednesday morning, fighting resumed, with two activists shot dead in the first fatalities since the protests began two months ago.

More from GlobalPost: Standoff continues in Ukraine after unprecedented violence

Thousands of demonstrators continued to face down armor-clad security forces blocking access to the Verkhovna Rada parliament on Tuesday night.

Hundreds of people were injured during the unprecedented violence in the center of Kyiv, with demonstrators hurling Molotov cocktails and stones at security forces, who retaliated with stun grenades, rubber bullets and tear gas. 

More from GlobalPost: Russia warns Ukraine 'out of control' after new violence

The clashes follow two months of protests over the government's decision to spurn a trade deal with the European Union and turn toward Russia instead.

Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov warned that the situation in Ukraine was spiraling "out of control."

Widely condemned legislation banning nearly all forms of protest in the ex-Soviet country fuelled the latest violence as President Viktor Yanukovych scrambled to find a solution to the political crisis.

More from GlobalPost: Ukraine, EU deal complicated by Russia and dream of a Eurasian Union

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A protester speaks to riot police blocking access to the Ukrainian parliament in the capital Kiev on Jan. 21, 2014.

(SERGEI SUPINSKY - AFP/Getty Images)
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Protesters stand behind a barricade in the Ukrainian capital of Kiev on Jan. 21, 2014, after a night of violence clashes with police.

(SERGEI SUPINSKY - AFP/Getty Images)
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Former world boxing champion turned opposition leader Vitali Klitschko (R) speaks to priests in front of riot police after violent clashes in the Ukrainian capital of Kiev on Jan. 21, 2014.

(GENYA SAVILOV - AFP/Getty Images)
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Anti-government protesters clash with police in the Ukrainian capital of Kiev on Jan. 20, 2014.

(SERGEI SUPINSKY - AFP/Getty Images)
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Explosions illuminate riot police during clashes with anti-government protesters in the Ukrainian capital of Kiev on Jan. 20, 2014.

(AFP - AFP/Getty Images)
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Riot policemen are seen through the wreckage of a burnt bus in the Ukrainian capital of Kiev on Jan. 20, 2014.

(GENYA SAVILOV - AFP/Getty Images)
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Anti-government protesters throw Molotov cocktails during violent clashes with police in the Ukrainian capital of Kiev on Jan. 20, 2014.

(SERGEI SUPINSKY - AFP/Getty Images)
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Plumes of smoke rise above protesters during violent clashes with riot police in the Ukrainian capital of Kiev on Jan. 19, 2014.

(AFP - AFP/Getty Images)
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Protesters clash with riot police in the Ukrainian capital of Kiev on Jan. 19, 2014.

(SERGEI SUPINSKY - AFP/Getty Images)
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Protesters throw stones and Molotov cocktails at riot police during violent clashes in the Ukrainian capital of Kiev on Jan. 19, 2014.

(GENYA SAVILOV - AFP/Getty Images)
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It's a lovely thing when shared traditions unite so many different people.