MOSCOW, February 7 (RIA Novosti) – Police in Ukraine said Friday that a blast at the headquarters of anti-government demonstrators in the capital may have been caused by the accidental detonation of a bomb being primed for a terrorist attack.
Ukrainian authorities have in recent weeks sought to discredit a months-long wave of protests that has plunged the former Soviet nation into a full-blown political crisis by arguing that government opponents are seeking to sow violent unrest and foment instability.
“Right-wing radical groups are planning to shatter the world again and they are willing to use terrorism,” the Interior Ministry said in a statement.
The blast that rocked the Trade Union House in Kiev on Thursday injured at least two people, including a man who had his hand blown off and a 15-year-old boy who suffered third-degree burns to his eyes.
According to police, officers attempted to enter the building, but opposition lawmaker Vladimir Arev told demonstrators not to allow law enforcement officers into the building.
Street protests have paralyzed the country’s government since President Viktor Yanukovych backed away from closer economic and political ties with the EU in November in favor of a closer relationship with Russia.
One wave of violence in Kiev in early December was precipitated by the aggressive clearance of a protest camp by police.
The city saw worse clashes between rioters and police for several days last month following the hasty passage of draconian laws strictly curbing the right to protest. Those laws were later repealed.