2014-02-20T162024Z_1_CBREA1J19E300_RTROPTP_2_UKRAINE

Obama looking at range of sanctions on Ukraine violence -White House

Anti-government protesters clean the Independence Square after clashes with riot police in KievBy Steve Holland and Lesley Wroughton WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama is urgently considering a range of sanctions against Ukraine after the death toll mounted from violent protests in central Kiev, the White House said on Thursday. No details were given on the options under consideration or the timeline for decisions, but Obama spoke with German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Thursday to discuss steps to help end the violence. “The president and senior members of his team have been acting quickly to consider the range of options that are available and acting with a sense of urgency, because of the terrible violence that we saw overnight,” White House spokesman Josh Earnest told reporters at a briefing. Ukraine suffered its bloodiest day since Soviet times on Thursday when more than 20 civilians were killed after three hours of fighting in Kiev’s Independence Square, which was recaptured by anti-government protesters.

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