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Ukraine protests erupt in violence leaving dozens dead and hundreds injured (PHOTOS)
Tuesday, February 18th, 2014

Violent clashes between anti-government protesters and security forces erupted in Ukraine’s capital Kyiv on Tuesday, leaving a dozens of people dead and hundreds more injured.

Police used stun and smoke grenades and rubber bullets to stop thousands of stone-throwing protesters marching on the parliament where lawmakers were expected to debate changes to the constitution.

The party headquarters of embattled President Viktor Yanukovych were also attacked. 

More from GlobalPost: 77 reported dead in Kyiv clashes (LIVE BLOG)

But the opposition was blocked from submitting its proposed changes that would have restored the 2004 constitution and curbed the powers of Yanukovych, leading to scuffles inside the parliament. 

Security forces gave protesters a deadline of 6 p.m. local time to stop the unrest, warning they would then "use all the possible methods" to end it.

The sudden escalation in violence, which reportedly left between three and seven people dead, also came hours after Moscow agreed to provide Kyiv the $2 billion in aid it had been holding back.

The money is part of the $15 billion in loans that Russia pledged back in December to help the struggling Ukrainian economy. 

The Ukrainian protest movement began in November when Yanukovych walked away from a trade and cooperation agreement with the European Union in favor of closer ties with Russia. 
 

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Unidentified soldiers with armored vehicles block the base of the Ukrainian border guard service in Sevastopol, on March 1, 2014.

(Vasiliy Batanov - AFP/Getty Images)
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Armed men outside Simferopol's airport in Ukraine's Crimean peninsula on February 28, 2014.

(Ben C. Solomon - GlobalPost)
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Armed men outside Simferopol's airport in Ukraine's Crimean peninsula on February 28, 2014.

(Ben C. Solomon - GlobalPost)
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Armed men outside Simferopol's airport in Ukraine's Crimean peninsula on February 28, 2014.

(Ben C. Solomon - GlobalPost)
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Women hold pictures of protesters who were killed in clashes with police during recent demonstrations as they take part in a commemorative procession in central Kyiv on February 26, 2014.

(BULENT KILIC - AFP/Getty Images)
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Protesters stand on a military armored vehicle in central Kyiv on February 26, 2014.

(BULENT KILIC - AFP/Getty Images)
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A woman places a flower alongside a helmet on Feb. 21, 2014 near the site in central Kyiv where an anti-government protester was killed during clashes with police on the night of February 20.

(SERGEY GAPON - AFP/Getty Images)
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Deputies leave Kyiv's Parliament as Maidan self-defense activists stand guard outside on Feb. 22, 2014. The Yanukovych regime appeared close to collapse as the emboldened opposition took control of key government and parliament positions and voted to immediately free its jailed leader Yulia Tymoshenko.

(SERGEI SUPINSKY - AFP/Getty Images)
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A musician plays the Ukrainian national anthem for Maidan activists guarding the ministers' cabinet in Kyiv on Feb. 22, 2014. Batkivshchyna (Fatherland) opposition party lawmaker Mykola Katerynchuk told reporters that President Viktor Yanukovych has promised to submit his resignation in response to violence that left nearly 100 dead in anti-government unrest.

(SERGEI SUPINSKY - AFP/Getty Images)
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A man suspected by protesters of being a pro-government sniper is forced to pay his respects to a victim killed in the recent clashes. Amid the apparent power vacuum in Kyiv, fears remained on Feb. 22, 2014 over the potential threat of separatism in a country still largely split along cultural and linguistic lines.

(BULENT KILIC - AFP/Getty Images)
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A woman places a flower near the site in central Kyiv where an anti-government protester was killed during clashes with police on the night of February 20.

(SERGEY GAPON - AFP/Getty Images)
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Deputies of the Ukrainian parliament opposition react after voting for a constitution change in Kyiv on Feb. 21, 2014. Ukraine's parliament on Friday voted to return the ex-Soviet country to its 2004 constitution, which limits the president's powers and gives lawmakers the right to appoint key ministers.

(ANDREW KRAVCHENKO - AFP/Getty Images)
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German Foreign Affairs minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier (C) and head of Udar ("Punch") party Vitali Klitschko (L) shake hands while Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych (R) gestures after signing an agreement in Kyiv on Feb. 21, 2014. Ukraine's leader and opposition on Friday signed a deal to end the splintered country's worst crisis since independence after three days of carnage left nearly 100 protesters dead and the heart of Kyiv resembling a war zone.

(SERGEI SUPINSKY - AFP/Getty Images)
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A protester stands on a barricade in front of the remains of the Trade Union building on Kyiv's Independence Square after Ukraine's deputy army chief resigned in protest on Feb. 21, 2014. On Saturday, the Interior Ministry transferred their support to the people of Ukraine as parliament considered impeaching President Yanukovych, who has left the capital.

(GENYA SAVILOV - AFP/Getty Images)
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Anti-government protesters stand beneath a giant poster of jailed former Ukrainian Prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko as they attend a rally on Independence square in Kyiv on February 21, 2014. Ukraine's parliament voted to release Tymoshenko later in the day.

(BULENT KILIC - AFP/Getty Images)
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Protesters shout at a barricade on February 21, 2014 at the Independent square in Kyiv.

(LOUISA GOULIAMAKI - AFP/Getty Images)
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Protesters catch fire as they stand behind burning barricades during clashes with police on February 20, 2014 in Kyiv.

(BULENT KILIC - AFP/Getty Images)
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Riot police face anti-government protesters during clashes central Kyiv on February 20, 2014.

(AFP - AFP/Getty Images)
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A priest holds a cross and shield during clashes between anti-government protesters and riot police in central Kyiv on February 20, 2014.

(AFP - AFP/Getty Images)
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An anti-government protester aims a gun in the direction of suspected sniper fire near the Hotel Ukraine on February 20, 2014 in Kyiv, Ukraine.

(Brendan Hoffman - AFP/Getty Images)
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Dead bodies lay on the ground surrounded by fellow anti-government protesters during clashes with riot police in central Kyiv on February 20, 2014.

(AFP - AFP/Getty Images)
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Dead bodies lay on the ground surrounded by fellow anti-government protesters during clashes with riot police in central Kiev on February 20, 2014.

(AFP - AFP/Getty Images)
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Anti-government protesters rebuild barricades following continued clashes with police in Independence square, despite a truce agreed between the Ukrainian president and opposition leaders on February 20, 2014 in Kyiv, Ukraine.

(Jeff J Mitchell - AFP/Getty Images)
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Anti-government protesters rebuild barricades following continued clashes with police in Independence square, despite a truce agreed between the Ukrainian president and opposition leaders on February 20, 2014 in Kyiv, Ukraine.

(Jeff J Mitchell - AFP/Getty Images)
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Anti-government protesters protect themselves behind shields as they clash with the police on Independence Square in Kyiv early on February 19, 2014.

(SERGEI SUPINSKY - AFP/Getty Images)
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Anti-government protesters clash with the police on Independence Square in Kyiv early on February 19, 2014.

(SERGEI SUPINSKY - AFP/Getty Images)
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An anti-government protester wearing a helmet stands on Independence Square in Kyiv during clashes with the police early on February 19, 2014.

(SERGEI SUPINSKY - AFP/Getty Images)
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Anti-government protesters sleep on the floor inside the Mikhailovsky Monastery, which has been converted into a makeshift hospital, on Feb. 19, 2014 in Kyiv, Ukraine.

(Brendan Hoffman - AFP/Getty Images)
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An injured anti-government protester awaits treatment at the Mikhailovsky Monastery, which has been converted into a makeshift hospital, on Feb. 19, 2014 in Kyiv, Ukraine.

(Brendan Hoffman - AFP/Getty Images)
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Residents hand out food to anti-government protesters on Independence square in Kyiv on Feb. 19, 2014.

(Genya Savilov - AFP/Getty Images)
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Anti-government protesters dig up cobblestones to use them as rocks against riot police on Kyiv's Independence square on Feb. 19, 2014

(Genya Savilov - AFP/Getty Images)
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A view out from inside the Trade Unions Building, which has served as the de facto headquarters for the anti-government protest movement, as the building burns on Feb. 19, 2014 in Kyiv, Ukraine.

(Brendan Hoffman - AFP/Getty Images)
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An auditorium inside the Trade Unions Building, which has served as the de facto headquarters for the anti-government protest movement, is filled with smoke and flames as the building burns on Feb. 19, 2014 in Kyiv, Ukraine.

(Brendan Hoffman - AFP/Getty Images)
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Anti-government protesters walk amid debris and flames near the perimeter of Independence Square, known as Maidan, on Feb. 19, 2014 in Kyiv, Ukraine.

(Brendan Hoffman - AFP/Getty Images)
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Clashes between anti-government protesters and police in Ukraine's capital Kyiv turned deadly on Feb. 18, 2014. Some reports said at least seven people were killed in the violence.

(GENYA SAVILOV - AFP/Getty Images)
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A protester attacks police hiding behind their shields as rocks rain down on them in central Kyiv, the capital of Ukraine, on Feb. 18, 2014.

(GENYA SAVILOV - AFP/Getty Images)
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A protester wearing a gas mask hurls a rock at police during deadly clashes in central Kyiv, the capital of Ukraine, on Feb. 18, 2014.

(GENYA SAVILOV - AFP/Getty Images)
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Protesters throw rocks at police during deadly clashes in Ukraine's capital Kyiv on Feb. 18, 2014. Police used rubber bullets and stun grenades to stop thousands of protesters marching on parliament where lawmakers were preparing to debates changes to the constitution.

(SERGEI SUPINSKY - AFP/Getty Images)
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Protesters hurl rocks at police in front of the Ukrainian parliament in the capital Kyiv on Feb. 18, 2014. Vehicles were set on fire during the deadly clashes that reportedly left at least seven people dead and dozens injured.

(SERGEI SUPINSKY - AFP/Getty Images)
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Police used rubber bullets and stun grenades to stop thousands of stone-throwing protesters marching on parliament in Ukraine's capital Kyiv on Feb. 18, 2104, as lawmakers prepared to debate changes to the constitution.

(SERGEI SUPINSKY - AFP/Getty Images)
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Protesters hide behind shields as police use rubber bullets and stun grenades to keep them away from the Ukrainian parliament in the capital Kyiv on Feb. 18, 2014.

(SERGEI SUPINSKY - AFP/Getty Images)
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Protesters used sticks and rocks to attack police who responded with stun and smoke grenades and rubber bullets during deadly clashes in front of the Ukrainian parliament in the capital Kyiv on Feb. 18, 2014.

(SERGEI SUPINSKY - AFP/Getty Images)
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Protesters huddle behind shields as police throw smoke grenades during clashes outside the Ukrainian parliament in the capital Kyiv on Feb. 18, 2014.

(SERGEI SUPINSKY - AFP/Getty Images)
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