UK

Horrific Footage Appears To Show Kiev Demonstrators Being Shot Dead (GRAPHIC VIDEO)

20/02/2014 13:22 GMT | Updated 20/02/2014 18:59 GMT

WARNING: The video below is extremely graphic...

Brutal footage of what appears to be Ukrainian special forces shooting dead protesters in Kiev has emerged.

SEE ALSO: Incredible Before And After Pictures Of Kiev's Devastated Independence Square

Residents in the capital have been warned not to go outside while snipers have been spotted firing into crowds.

Sky reporter David Bowden, who is in Kiev said: "Police are hitting back and are shooting – probably not at random – but they are shooting with live rounds at the protesters.

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Ukraine Violence

"The police seem to have been caught off guard and they're reacting very aggressively and basically just shooting people."

At least 26 people have reportedly been killed including the eight pictured here.

kiev

Bodies lined up in Independence Square

The violence has escalated rapidly between the two sides as demonstrations against the government's relationship away from the EU and closer to Russia.

Numerous photos of bullet casings have emerged lending further credence to the idea the security forces have moved beyond using just the tear gas and rubber bullets that characterised the earlier stages of the violence.

The clashes come despite a truce that was declared on Wednesday night.

Amnesty International Europe and Central Asia Director John Dalhuisen said: "This senseless loss of human life is deeply disturbing.

"The Ukrainian authorities must take all measures in their power to stop and prevent the unlawful use of force and firearms, both by police officers and any vigilante groups who are colluding with them. All those responsible must be brought to justice.

"With the Minister of Interior just announcing that police would now carry firearms, it is imperative that police restrict their distribution to fully-trained firearms officers and use them only as a last resort in self-defence or the defence of others against the imminent threat of death of serious injury."