Protesters, government backers, aim for large demonstrations in Ukraine's capital

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Opposition demonstrators are heading for a major rally in the center of Ukraine's capital while government backers are gathering nearby for their own demonstration, as tensions remain strong in the political crisis now in its fourth week.

The opposition's confidence has been bolstered in the past week after riot police stood down from two confrontations with protesters and by indications the government is attempting to appease them. The protest camp in downtown Kiev has expanded in recent days, with a score of large, army-style tents extending hundreds of meters down the street from Independence Square, the center of the protests.

Opposition rallies the past two Sundays have attracted hundreds of thousands. Backers of President Viktor Yanukovych's party are also gathering for a counter-demonstration on Sunday.