• Wednesday, September 24, 2014

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Russia

Ukraine ratifies EU pact

Ukraine ratifies EU pact

Ukrainian lawmakers ratified a landmark EU pact yesterday that steers the ex-Soviet state closer to the West, and pledged autonomy for pro-Russian Ukrainian lawmakers ratified a landmark EU pact yesterday that steers the ex-Soviet state closer to the West, and pledged autonomy for pro-Russian rebels waging war in the east. But Russia signalled it had no intention of backing down in the most serious East-West standoff since the Cold war, with the announcement it plans to boost its troop presence in annexed Crimea. Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu said it was a...

Ukraine rebels to get self-rule

Ukraine rebels to get self-rule

Rebel-controlled regions of eastern Ukraine have been granted self-rule and fighters have been given an amnesty, under a new law adopted by parliament. The measures are in line with the 5 September ceasefire agreement signed by President Petro Poroshenko. The amnesty affects rebels in Donetsk and Luhansk regions, but does not cover the shooting down...

Russia must boost Crimea forces: Defence Minister

Russia must boost Crimea forces: Defence Minister

Russia needs to boost forces in Crimea because of the Ukraine crisis and a foreign military build-up, Russia's Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu says. He said Russia must deploy "a full and self-reliant" military force in Crimea, which it annexed in March. Pro-Russian rebels in eastern Ukraine launched their bid for separation shortly after the annexation. Since...

Ukraine Crisis

EU approves new sanctions on Russia

The European Union agreed to a new wave of sanctions against Russia on Monday, but said their entry into force would take a few days, giving time to recent peace moves by Moscow. "Depending on the situation on the ground, the EU stands ready to review the agreed sanctions in whole or in part," said Herman Van Rompuy, President of the European Council in a statement, after a last-minute meeting of EU envoys in Brussels. Russia has warned West against new...

EU adopts fresh sanctions on Russia

EU adopts fresh sanctions on Russia

European Union member states have formally adopted new sanctions on Russia over the Ukraine crisis. The new measures include restrictions on large Russian state-owned oil companies raising money on European financial markets. However, the new measures will come into effect "in the next few days", not on Tuesday as some had expected. Russia denies accusations by...

Ukraine shelling rattles ceasefire

Ukraine shelling rattles ceasefire

Explosions have been heard near the south-eastern Ukrainian city of Mariupol, a day after the government and rebels agreed a ceasefire. A BBC correspondent in the city says intense blasts from the eastern edges have rippled across the city. Earlier, the Ukrainian and Russian presidents said the ceasefire in eastern Ukraine was "largely holding". The Red...

IS militants want to fight Putin

IS militants want to fight Putin

In a new geopolitical wrinkle, the Islamic State is now eyeing a challenge against Russia and its President Vladimir Putin, The Washington Post reported. The report quotes AFP’s transcription of a video released by the Islamic State last week. The fighters said to have posed on top of Russian military equipment, including a fighter jet...

Ukraine crisis: Ceasefire is 'largely holding'

Ukraine crisis: Ceasefire is 'largely holding'

The Ukrainian and Russian presidents have agreed that a ceasefire in eastern Ukraine is "largely holding". Ukraine's Petro Poroshenko said he spoke by phone to his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin to discuss steps to make Friday's truce durable. Some 2,600 people have died in fighting after pro-Russian rebels seized towns in eastern Ukraine in April. Meanwhile,...

Both sides agree Ukraine ceasefire

Both sides agree Ukraine ceasefire

The Ukrainian government and pro-Russia rebels have signed a truce deal to end almost five months of fighting. The two sides, meeting in the Belarusian capital Minsk, agreed to stop firing at 15:00 GMT. President Petro Poroshenko said he would do "everything possible" to end the bloodshed. The rebels said the truce had not changed...

Nato plans 4,000 strong rapid reaction force

Nato plans 4,000 strong rapid reaction force

The UK is to contribute a quarter of the troops in a new 4,000-strong Nato rapid reaction force for initial deployment in the Baltics, easing anxiety among member states near Russia's border that the Kremlin could repeat its aggression in Ukraine elsewhere in the region. The announcement will come against the backdrop of peace...

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