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Ukraine Amnesty Will Come Into Force, Say Prosecutors

An amnesty for anti-government protesters in Ukraine will come into force on Monday, prosecutors have confirmed.The prosecutor’s website said criminal charges would be dropped in response to the protesters’ decision to end their occupation of government buildings.

Ukraine protesters leave

By leaving the City Hall and other locations, they met the government’s conditions under an amnesty law.

Protesters had held some of the buildings for more than two months.

The BBC’s David Stern in Kiev says protesters have also partially dismantled barricades on a street in the centre of the capital.

However, a group of radical protesters are also reported to have blocked the entrance to the City Hall building, shortly after other opposition supporters vacated it.

They are not thought to have entered the building itself.

The protests started in November when President Viktor Yanukovych abandoned plans to sign a far-reaching association agreement with the EU.

Instead, he advocated closer trade relations with Russia, which dominated Ukraine for centuries until the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991.

Prisoners released

Protesters left City Hall on Sunday morning.

The Swiss ambassador in Kiev entered the building soon afterwards to help transfer it to the control of the authorities.

Switzerland currently holds the rotating presidency of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe.

On Friday authorities feed the last of 243 prisoners who were arrested during the unrest.

Mr Yanukovich passed an amnesty law last month and agreed to negotiate with the opposition after at least four people were killed in protests.

This weekend, some opposition members continued to call for his departure, and another demonstration is due to take place in Kiev’s central Independence Square.

“The only subject of negotiation with Yanukovych is the conditions of his departure,” jailed opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko said on Saturday.

She went on to accuse the Ukrainian president of being under the control of Russia’s Vladimir Putin, his major international backer.

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