Putin wants troops out of Ukraine's east, acting president renews military draft

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Associated Press

Posted on May 1, 2014 at 1:32 PM

Updated Thursday, May 1 at 2:33 PM

DONETSK, Ukraine (AP) — Ukraine's acting president has ordered the military draft be renewed as unrest in the country intensifies.

Ukraine last year announced plans to end military conscription, but Oleksandr Turchynov (oh-lek-SAN'-dur tur-CHY'-nahv) says the draft must be renewed in light of threats to "Ukraine's territorial integrity and interference by Russia."

The order came just hours after Russian President Vladimir Putin said Ukraine should withdraw its military units from the eastern and southern regions of the country, where anti-government insurgents continue to seize buildings.

Moscow has consistently denounced Ukrainian security forces' largely ineffectual "anti-terrorist" operation against the insurgents and warned they shouldn't commit violence against civilians.

In the regional capital city of Donetsk (dah-NETSK') today, anti-government demonstrators took over the regional prosecutor's office. Riot police tried to ward them off with stun grenades and tear gas, but demonstrators managed to drag away and beat a handful of officers.

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APPHOTO XMB104: A pro Russia activist is seen in a tear gas cloud while throwing rocks at the prosecutor building, after a pro Russia demonstration during International Worker's Day in Donestsk, Ukraine, Thursday, May 1, 2014. Anti-government demonstrators in Donetsk have stormed the local prosecutor's office. The clash came after a march by several hundred people carrying flags of the Donetsk People's Republic, a movement that seeks either greater autonomy from the central government, or independence and possible annexation by Russia.(AP Photo/Manu Brabo) (1 May 2014)

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APPHOTO XDMV110: Pro-Russian protesters burn Ukrainian symbols in front of the regional administration building after clash with police in Donetsk, Ukraine, Thursday, May 1, 2014. Anti-government demonstrators in Donetsk have stormed the local prosecutor's office. The clash came after a march by several hundred people carrying flags of the Donetsk People's Republic, a movement that seeks either greater autonomy from the central government, or independence and possible annexation by Russia. (AP Photo/Evgeniy Maloletka) (1 May 2014)

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APPHOTO XMB115: Pro Russian activists stand with their shields in defensive position after storming the prosecutor building, after a pro Russia demonstration during International Worker's Day in Donestsk, Ukraine, Thursday, May 1, 2014. Anti-government demonstrators in Donetsk have stormed the local prosecutor's office. The clash came after a march by several hundred people carrying flags of the Donetsk People's Republic, a movement that seeks either greater autonomy from the central government, or independence and possible annexation by Russia.(AP Photo/Manu Brabo) (1 May 2014)

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APPHOTO XMB113: A pro Russia activist stands outside the prosecutor building after a pro Russia demonstration during International Worker's Day in Donestsk, Ukraine, Thursday, May 1, 2014. Anti-government demonstrators in Donetsk have stormed the local prosecutor's office. The clash came after a march by several hundred people carrying flags of the Donetsk People's Republic, a movement that seeks either greater autonomy from the central government, or independence and possible annexation by Russia.(AP Photo/Manu Brabo) (1 May 2014)

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APPHOTO XDMV107: A Pro-Russian activist, right, speaks with police officers during clashes in front of the regional administration building in Donetsk, Ukraine, Thursday, May 1, 2014. Anti-government demonstrators in Donetsk have stormed the local prosecutor's office. The clash came after a march by several hundred people carrying flags of the Donetsk People's Republic, a movement that seeks either greater autonomy from the central government, or independence and possible annexation by Russia. (AP Photo/Evgeniy Maloletka) (1 May 2014)

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APPHOTO XDMV108: Police officers guard regional administration building during clashes with Pro-Russian activists in Donetsk, Ukraine, Thursday, May 1, 2014. Anti-government demonstrators in Donetsk have stormed the local prosecutor's office. The clash came after a march by several hundred people carrying flags of the Donetsk People's Republic, a movement that seeks either greater autonomy from the central government, or independence and possible annexation by Russia. (AP Photo/Evgeniy Maloletka) (1 May 2014)

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