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In Photos: Inside an Occupied Building With Pro-Russia Separatists

We went to a former KGB building in the Ukrainian city of Luhansk that is being occupied by pro-Russia separatists.

by VICE News
Apr 10 2014, 7:50pm

Photos by Frederick Paxton

Pro-Russian separatists have overtaken the offices of the SBU state security service — a former KGB building — in the Ukrainian city of Luhansk, which sits approximately 30 miles from the Russian border. VICE News went inside the building and met Alexei Karyakin, a member of the coordination council of the self-proclaimed “South-East Army.”

Meanwhile, a group of Russia-supporters in Donetsk declared an independent republic, and called for a Crimea-style referendum by May 11. VICE News was there as hundreds of people have gathered on the square in front of the building daily to demand the referendum.

Protest calling for closer ties to Russia outside the captured security headquarters in Luhansk, Ukraine.

Pro-Russia Gunman inside the captured security headquarters in Luhansk, Ukraine.

A pro-Russia protestor inside the captured administrative headquarters of the Donetsk Region of eastern Ukraine.

A pro-Russia protestor rests in the captured administrative headquarters of the Donetsk Region of eastern Ukraine where electricity was temporarily cut.

Commander of the self-proclaimed “Eastern Front,” Eduard Akopov and his comrades hold up a Russian flag inside the captured administrative headquarters of the Donetsk Region of eastern Ukraine.

Commander of the self-proclaimed “Eastern Front,” Eduard Akopov, inside the captured administrative headquarters of the Donetsk Region of eastern Ukraine.

Protesters in Ukraine are demanding a referendum that is similar to what led to the annexation of Crimea by Russia last month. See photos here.

Flags of the Russian Federation and the self-proclaimed “Donetsk Republic” inside parliament in the captured administrative headquarters of the Donetsk Region of eastern Ukraine.

Pro-Russia protestors on the roof of the captured administrative headquarters of the Donetsk Region of eastern Ukraine.

Pro-Russia protestors on the roof of the captured administrative headquarters of the Donetsk Region of eastern Ukraine.

The hazily barricaded lobby of the captured administrative headquarters of the Donetsk Region of eastern Ukraine.

Pro-Russia protestors on the roof of the captured administrative headquarters of the Donetsk Region of eastern Ukraine.

More on Ukraine:

Watch all of VICE News' dispatches, Russian Roulette: The Invasion of Ukraine here.

Burger King invades Crimea After McDonald's exit. Read more here.

All photos by Frederick Paxton. Follow Frederick on Twitter: @freddiepaxton