At about 01.00 on Wednesday, December 11, several thousand law enforcement officers surrounded Independence Square and stormed the barricades and tents put up by the protesters, reports Ukrinform.

Just after midnight, officers dressed in full riot gear began dismantling barricades which activists had set up in their campaign to get the government to reverse its decision to pull out of a trade pact with the EU.

Ukraine’s special forces herded protesters into the centre of the square. As more people turned out to support the activists, the two sides ended up facing each other down, Euronews reported.

However just before dawn, police suddenly stopped operations.

Officers remained in place but made no move to pull down tents in the centre of the square where protesters had been living.

UDAR Party leader Vitali Klitschko has said that through a second attempt to disperse demonstrators on Independence Square in Kyiv President Viktor Yanukovych has closed the path to any compromise, for which some politicians and public figures called, LigaBusinessInform has reported.

"There can be no compromise with thugs and dictators. It's necessary to get rid of them. Today the number one question is the resignation of Yanukovych and his whole rotten government. Now it's surprising to hear about some compromise in the form of 'technical governments' or constitutional amendments. It will all be manipulation and a play in favor of Yanukovych and retaining his power. The main evil is Yanukovych himself, and everything else is what he created," UDAR's press service quoted Klitschko as saying.