EU Continues Calls for Ukraine Cooperation
European Union leaders are opening a second day of meetings in Brussels with renewed calls for Ukraine to sign a deal establishing closer ties with the EU, despite the Ukrainian government's efforts to strengthen the relationship with Russia instead.
President Dalia Grybauskaite of Lithuania, which currently holds the EU's rotating presidency, said Friday that "Europe is open for Ukrainian people, but not necessarily for this government."
While pro-EU demonstrations continue in Kyiv and other Ukrainian cities, President Viktor Yanukovych on Thursday harshly criticized the West for supporting the protests, which are calling for his ouster. He announced plans to partially join a Moscow-led economic union - a move likely to deepen the country's political crisis.
Speaking in a televised interview with some hand-picked journalists, Mr. Yanukovych criticized foreign nations for meddling in Ukraine's internal affairs. The president said he is ((- in his words - )) "categorically against others coming to our country and teaching us how to live." He ruled out early elections.
Officials Investigate London Theater Collapse
Investigators in London are trying to figure out why part of the ceiling of a theater collapsed mid-performance Thursday, injuring at least 88 people at a nearly sold-out show.
Officials say it is not clear whether a downpour of rain just prior to the incident had contributed to the collapse. Police said there was no indication the collapse was the result of any deliberate act or attack.
London police told VOA there were 81 so-called "walking wounded" and that seven others were taken to the hospital following the incident at the Apollo Theater. No fatalities have been reported.
Rescue workers at the scene said all those trapped by the collapse in the century-old, 775-seat auditorium have been freed.