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Russian Foreign Ministry Wants 'Impartial' Investigation into Odessa Riots

Local residents lay flowers at broken windows of a burnt trade union building before an Orthodox ceremony to mourn the deaths of pro-Russian supporters killed during street battles between pro-Russian and pro-Ukrainian supporters, in the Black Sea port of Odessa, Ukraine.

Russia has called on international organizations to ensure an "open and impartial" investigation by Kiev into deaths during riots in the Ukrainian city of Odessa this month, the Foreign Ministry said.

At least 37 people in the southern Ukrainian port city died after a riot on May 2 ended with dozens of pro-Russian protesters trapped in a burning building. The incident, blamed by Moscow on Kiev authorities and their backers in the West, was a factor in driving rebellion in the country's south eastern regions.

Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov appealed to representatives of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe and the United Nations "with a call to guarantee an open and impartial investigation by the Kiev authorities into the tragedy in Odessa," said the statement released Monday.

The E.U. has also called for an independent investigation into the deaths in Odessa, which Kiev said was provoked by illegal military groups from Moldova's breakaway region of Transdnestr and Russian groups.

See also:
At Least 42 Die in Odessa Clashes

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