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White House urges unity government in Ukraine

By The Associated Press

This article was published February 22, 2014 at 2:18 p.m.

people-rejoice-at-independence-square-in-kiev-ukraine-saturday-feb-22-2014-protesters-took-control-of-ukraines-capital-saturday-seizing-the-presidents-office-as-parliament-voted-to-remove-him-and-hold-new-elections

People rejoice at Independence Square in Kiev, Ukraine, Saturday, Feb. 22, 2014. Protesters took control of Ukraine's capital Saturday, seizing the president's office as parliament voted to remove him and hold new elections.

WASHINGTON — The White House is welcoming the latest developments in Ukraine and urging the swift formation of a unity government.

White House spokesman Jay Carney also is welcoming Saturday's release from a prison hospital of former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko.

The Ukrainian parliament has voted to remove President Viktor Yanukovychfrom office and hold new elections.

He says it's a coup and insists he won't step down.

Saturday's developments were the result of a European-brokered peace deal between the president and opposition.

Carney says the "unshakeable principle" guiding events must be that the Ukrainian people determine their own future.

Protests began late last year after Yanukovych backed away from a deal for closer ties with Europe in favor of deeper relations with Russia.

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