Talks Underway to Free Donetsk Administration Building in Ukraine

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DONETSK, April 8 (RIA Novosti) – Ukrainian law enforcement agents continued talks with protesters occupying several government buildings in the eastern city of Donetsk on Tuesday, officials said.

“Exhaustive measures are currently being taken to hold a dialogue aimed at peacefully unblocking the seized administrative buildings in the city,” prosecutors said in a statement, citing the success of talks on Tuesday that led to protesters vacating the building of the Donetsk National Security Service and surrendering their weapons.

Acting Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Vitaly Yarema said Tuesday the country’s police has no plans to storm the regional administration building in Donetsk, seized by protesters over the weekend.

The anti-crisis headquarters, involving a range of top officials and law enforcement, is continuing operations in Donetsk to de-escalate tensions in the region.

The Russian Foreign Ministry earlier voiced concerns about the deployment of military resources in the country’s east, including US mercenaries and militants of the illegally armed far-right group Right Sector.

Protesters have been rallying for federalization across Ukraine’s eastern and southeastern regions of Donetsk, Kharkiv, and Lugansk, calling for Crimea-style referendums on the status of their regions within Ukraine.

Beginning last month, protests in eastern cities have been held each Sunday, with citizens refusing to accept their newly-appointed governors as legitimate, as they were installed by the organizers of the coup that came to power in the capital in February.