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Photos: Kiev's Independence Square Before And After

Hopes are high that the worst is over in the Ukrainian capital of Kiev, where dozens of people died this week as security forces responded to anti-government protests. As we reported earlier, President Viktor Yanukovych and key opposition leaders have signed an agreement about forming a unity government, holding new elections and restoring the nation's 2004 constitution.

Two pictures help tell the story of how difficult the past few months have been in Kiev's Independence Square, where the protests were centered. Here are looks at that location ...

... in 2005:

Kiev's Independence Square on March 23, 2005. Wolfgang Langenstrassen/DPA/Landov hide caption

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Wolfgang Langenstrassen/DPA/Landov

Kiev's Independence Square on March 23, 2005.

Wolfgang Langenstrassen/DPA/Landov

... and on Thursday:

Kiev's Independence Square on Thursday (Feb. 20, 2014). Vasily Fedosenko /Reuters/Landov hide caption

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Vasily Fedosenko /Reuters/Landov

Kiev's Independence Square on Thursday (Feb. 20, 2014).

Vasily Fedosenko /Reuters/Landov