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Eastern European countries welcome Ukraine 'change'

Countries in Eastern Europe have issued their support for Ukraine, after new parliamentary speaker Oleksander Turchinov, an ally of former prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko, was granted presidential powers:

Latvian PM resigns over deadly shopping mall collapse

Latvian Prime Minister announced his resignation over the collapse of a supermarket roof that killed 54 people last week."I am resigning from the post of prime minister, taking political responsibility for ... the tragedy," Valdis Dombrovskis told local journalists.

The mall collapsed last week. Credit: REUTERS/Ints Kalnins

The cause of the collapse remains unknown, though police have opened a criminal investigation focusing on the construction of the building.

Valdis Dombrovskis had been in office since 2009 and led the country through sweeping spending cuts and out of the economic downturn.

The country was widely praised for its recovery and is due to join the euro zone in January. His resignation brought down the Latvian centre-right government.

Latvia's PM resigns over supermarket collapse

Valdis Dombrovskis at a press conference near the collapsed Maxima supermarket Credit: Reuters

Latvia's Prime Minister Valdis Dombrovskis has resigned over the collapse of a supermarket which killed 54 people.

The roof of the supermarket in the capital Riga collapsed on top of shoppers last Thursday.

The Latvian President described the collapse as "murder" and called for an investigation.

Latvia store collapse survivor says he was 'lucky'

One of the first people to be pulled from the rubble of a collapsed supermarket in the Latvian capital of Riga spoke of his "lucky" escape as rescue workers continued excavation work at the site.

Aigars Benis, one of the first people to have been pulled out of the ruins of the Latvian supermarket. Credit: Reuters

Speaking to Reuters, Aigars Benis, had made a quick visit to the store on Thursday when the tragedy happened. He said: "There was a noise, I remember some piece of metal and I lost consciousness for a while.

"When I recovered consciousness, I saw sky and the windows of the building next to the store. It was raining. I realised that a disaster has happened. I was shocked, I thought I was having a nightmare...honestly speaking, I was lucky".


Latvia supermarket victims' injuries 'very serious'

People wounded after a supermarket collapsed in the Latvian capital of Riga have suffered "very serious injuries", the Emergency Medical Service told local news agency Diena.

Rescue specialists cut a hole on the side wall of the collapsed supermarket in Riga Credit: Reuters

Officials said 54 people have now been confirmed dead following the initial collapse of the supermarket roof on Friday.

NMPD leader Armand Plorinš added: "There is a broken backbone, which in itself is very serious. Various internal organ damage, even pierced lungs. Severe head injuries, the seriousness and potential consequences could not initially even be measured".

Latvia mourns supermarket victims at church services

Worshippers attending Sunday morning service churches across Latvia have offered prayers for those who died after a supermarket roof collapsed in the capital Riga.

People attend a mass in the Doma church for the victims of the collapsed supermarket. Credit: REUTERS/Ints Kalnins

Archbishop emeritus of Riga, Janis Pujats, led one mass at the Our Lady of Sorrows Catholic Church, and called on the faithful to "take care that such things don't happen".

Children gather to pay their respects at the site of the Latvia supermarket collapse. Credit: REUTERS/Ints Kalnins

Officials said seven people, who they believe were in the supermarket when the roof collapsed, are still missing, but there is no hope that rescuers will find any survivors.

People gather near the collapsed supermarket in Riga to pay their respects today.

At least 54 people died following Friday's initial collapse.

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