Local Ukrainians rally to support demonstrators

SEATTLE -- Members of the local Ukrainian community gathered tonight to show their support for demonstrators in Ukraine.

Seattle-area members of the Ukrainian community gathered outside St. James Cathedral to protest the Ukrainian government's use of force in dealing with non-violent demonstrators. They gathered and sang songs to show solidarity with the Kiev protesters and a closer alliance between Ukraine and the European Union.

Thousands of Ukrainians are protesting in the streets of Kiev. Demonstrators rebuilt their barricades that riot police had torn down and they are occupying Kiev's city hall building, reports CNN.

The protests began when Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovych backed out of signing an economic deal that would have brought their country closer to the EU, at the expense of Ukraine's alliance with Russia.

The Obama administration is supporting the protesters and a White House spokesman calls the Ukrainian government's actions unacceptable.