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Subject We want out of Ukraine: Donetsk protesters dig in at government building
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Original Message We want out of Ukraine: Donetsk protesters dig in at government building
By Nick Paton Walsh, CNN
April 8, 2014 -- Updated 1736 GMT (0136 HKT)
Watch this video
Donetsk separatists remain defiant

Hundreds of protesters seize a government building in Donetsk, eastern Ukraine
They declare "People's Republic of Donetsk," call for referendum to secede from Ukraine
Ukrainian military says it won't retake building yet, but acting President warns of prosecutions
Ukrainian President Oleksandr Turchynov accuses Russia of stoking eastern Ukraine tensions

Donetsk, Ukraine (CNN) -- Masked men with metal rods and Molotov cocktails prowl the Russian flag-draped balcony, surveying the crowds below. Stacks of tires topped with ribbons of razor wire line a makeshift barricade around the main entrance.

Two days after smashing their way in, hundreds of protesters have transformed this government building in the industrial city of Donetsk, eastern Ukraine, into the self-declared "People's Republic of Donetsk."

From the clumsily erected bulwarks to the lack of a leader or concrete plan, the scenes are similar to the pro-European rallies in Kiev's Maidan Square in recent months, with one major difference: Many of these protesters say they want to join Russia and have called for a referendum on secession from Ukraine to be held by May 11.

The protesters who let us into the building are eager to show they are here entirely peacefully, but it is clear they are prepared for a fight. Doors have been locked and stairwells blocked at the top of the building to prevent the Ukrainian military from storming in from above. They've smashed the pavement outside the building to use as stones. A makeshift hospital and temporary cafe have been constructed, and locals are keeping the men and women inside stocked up on food and medical supplies.

[link to edition.cnn.com]
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