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U.S. Warns Citizens Against Ukraine Travel

 / Updated 
Image: Pro-Russian residents rally in Donetsk, Ukraine
Pro-Russian residents rally at a central square in Donetsk in eastern Ukraine on Friday.Sergei Grits / AP

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The U.S. State Department on Friday warned U.S. citizens against non-essential travel to Ukraine, “particularly the Crimea Peninsula,” because of the Russian occupation.

In an update to previous warnings, the department noted the instability in the country after former President Viktor Yanukovych was forced out by protesters who set up roadblocks and occupied government buildings in several cities.

It also noted that Russian troops now controlled Crimea and said supporters of Russia had staged protests in eastern cities.

The department said the U.S. Embassy in Kiev was still open but had limited ability to respond to emergencies for U.S. citizens in other parts of Ukraine. On Thursday, the department said family members of U.S. government personnel in Ukraine could leave the country. Peace Corps volunteers left on Feb. 25.

The department urged U.S. citizens traveling in Ukraine to enroll in its Smart Traveler program to receive updates on security there.

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Image: Pro-Russian residents rally in Donetsk, Ukraine
Pro-Russian residents rally at a central square in Donetsk in eastern Ukraine on Friday.Sergei Grits / AP

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