WASHINGTON (AP) – The White House says the U.S. is outraged by violence in Ukraine and is urging President Viktor Yanukovych to withdraw forces from downtown Kiev immediately.
Press Secretary Jay Carney says the U.S. urges Ukraine’s military not to get involved in a conflict that must be resolved politically. He says the White House is outraged at images of Ukrainian security forces firing automatic guns on Ukrainian people.
Carney says in a statement that Ukraine should respect the right of protest and that protesters must be peaceful. The statement calls for dialogue to reduce tensions and address the people’s grievances.
Street battles between protesters and police have left dozens dead and hundreds wounded, raising fears of an uncontrollable spiral of violence in the ex-Soviet state. The U.S. has already threatened sanctions.