Russian troops 'opened fire during military post takeover'

Russian troops opened fire during a takeover of a Ukrainian military post in Crimea but no one was injured, news agency Interfax reports.

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Violent clashes as rival rallies take place across Ukraine

Pockets of violence were reported across Ukraine, as thousands of pro and anti-Russian protesters held rival rallies in the main cities of Crimea.

Pro Ukrainian rally in Black Sea port of Odessa Credit: AP Photo/Sergei Poliakov

Clashes flared in Sebastopol, when pro-Russian activists and Cossacks attacked a group of Ukrainians.

Ukrainian police detain a demonstrator during a pro Russia rally in Donetsk Credit: AP Photo/Sergei Grits

Thousands gathered at Kiev's Independence Square to mark the 200 anniversary of the birth of a poet and national hero Taras Shevchenko, protesting against Russia's involvement in Crimea.

People in Kiev celebrated the 200th birth anniversary of Ukrainian poet Taras Shevchenko Credit: REUTERS/Alex Kuzmin

Read: Pro-Ukraine and Russia rallies take place across Ukraine

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Elderly pro-Ukrainian rescued by police in Donetsk

ITV News cameraman Daniel Demoustier filmed an elderly lady with a Ukrainian flag being attacked by pro-Russian protesters in the eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk.

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Just filmed pro Russian protesters in #Donetsk attacking a brave old lady waving an Ukrainian flag. Watch it on @itvnews tonight. #Ukraine

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Old woman holding to her #Ukraine flag rescued by Police just after she got attacked by angry pro Russia protesters http://t.co/uU2MRLf91A

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Khodorkovsky: 'Russian propaganda lies, as always'

One of Vladimir Putin's biggest critics, Mikhail Khodorkovsky, accused Russia of being complicit in police violence against Ukrainian protesters on Kiev's Independence Square.

Volunteers greet Mikhail Khodorkovsky on Kiev's Independence Square Credit: REUTERS/Alex Kuzmin

The former Russian oil tycoon, addressing a crowd on the square where demonstrators rose up against Ukraine's Moscow-backed president, dismissed suggestions by Moscow that the protesters are "neo-fascists" bent on violence.

"Russian propaganda lies, as always. There are no fascists or Nazis here," Mr Khodorkovsky said.

William Hague: Russia's Ukraine intervention a 'miscalculation'

Pro-Ukraine supporters attacked in Donetsk

ITV News' Europe Correspondent Emma Murphy is in the Ukrainian city of Donetsk:

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Scuffles in #donetsk as some pro Ukraine supporters dare show their flag. Crowd turned on them, fireworks thrown. Third of a mile chase.

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Police surrounded those under attack but had nowhere to take them. Long dash down rd with crowd in pursuit

Read more: Vitali Klitschko visits Donetsk in bid to ease Ukraine divisions

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Pro-Russian supporters swamp Lenin Square, Donetsk

ITV News' Europe Correspondent Emma Murphy is in the Ukrainian city of Donetsk:

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At least 5000 pro Russia supporters swamping Lenin sq and main roads in #donetsk. Doesn't fit with klitschko's claim they're "tourists"

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Protestor laughs when I tell him Klitschko claimed they weren't local. "There's no enough buses or planes to get us here in these numbers"

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Tiny pro Ukraine gathering up the road. Inpart an indication of eastern position but certainly a sign of how threatened they feel.

Read more: Vitali Klitschko visits Donetsk in bid to ease Ukraine divisions

Pro-Ukrainian rallies take place in Crimea region

Pro-Ukrainian rallies are being held in Simferopol - the capital of Crimea.

Yesterday the first unit of the pro-Russian Military Forces of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea was sworn in at a public ceremony in the city.

Pro-Ukrainian supporters hold Ukranian flags at a rally in Simferopol, Crimea. Credit: REUTERS/Thomas Peter
Pro-Ukrainian supporters hold signs, one of them depicting Russian President Vladimir Putin as Adolf Hitler, at a rally in Simferopol. Credit: REUTERS/Thomas Peter

Russians 'seize border post in western Crimea'

Chernomorskoye depicted on the map with an 'A'
Chernomorskoye depicted on the map with an 'A' Credit: Google Maps

Russian forces have taken control of a Ukrainian border guard post in western Crimea, trapping about 30 personnel inside, according to a border guard spokesman.

He said the Chernomorskoye base on the western edge of the Black Sea peninsula had been taken over without bloodshed at around 6am (4am GMT).

The spokesman, Oleh Slobodyan, said Russian forces now controlled 11 border guard posts in Crimea.

Russian forces' seizure of the southern Ukrainian region, which began 11 days ago, has been bloodless. Ukrainian troops are trapped in a number of bases but have offered no armed resistance.

Read: Crimea pro-Russia military unit formed in Simferopol

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