President Viktor Yanukovych of Ukraine agreed Monday to abolish the country’s strict anti-protest laws that have helped spark violence in the capital of Kiev.
The decision marked a concession of sorts by Yanukovych after months of protests that have threatened his hold on power, after an opposition leader turned down his offer to join the government.
“A political decision has been made to abolish the laws adopted on January 16 that caused multiple discussions,” a statement on the president’s website said. The enactment of the law helped turn mostly peaceful protests into more violent clashes with police.
After meeting with opposition leaders Monday night, the Associated Press reports, Yanukovych also agreed to consider amnesty for protesters, but only if they vacate occupied buildings and roads. The Ukrainian parliament will likely vote to abolish the anti-protest laws in a special session scheduled for Tuesday.
Kiev’s Battlefield: Protests Ignite Fiery Clashes in Ukraine
Brendan Hoffman / Getty Images
Men carry a casket containing the body of Mikhail Zhiznevsky, 25, an anti-government protester who was killed in clashes with police, outside Mikhailovsky Cathedral after a memorial service there in his honor on Jan. 26, 2014 in Kiev.
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