• Friday, July 11, 2014

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Ukraine

Ukraine Crisis

Disarm first for talks, Kiev tells rebels

Ukraine yesterday brushed off strong European pressure as it rejected talks with pro-Russian rebels on a truce to halt a bloody insurgency convulsing the ex-Soviet nation until they laid down their arms. The unconditional stance reflected a new confidence in Kiev that it was on the verge of quashing a rebellion it views as Moscow's retribution for the February ouster of a Kremlin-backed leader and the decision to pursue a historic alliance with the West. But it was also bound to...

Ukraine rebels abandon stronghold

Ukraine rebels abandon stronghold

Pro-Russian separatists in Ukraine have evacuated the city of Sloviansk, a crucial eastern stronghold, amid a large-scale offensive by the military. Separatists said the "overwhelming numerical superiority" of the army had forced them to relocate to Kramatorsk. Troops have hoisted the Ukrainian flag over Sloviansk's council building, and officials said soldiers were mopping up the...

Ukraine's new defence minister promises Crimea victory

Ukraine's new defence minister promises Crimea victory

New Ukrainian Defence Minister Valeriy Heletey has vowed to hold "a victory parade" in Crimea, restoring the country's territorial integrity. Addressing parliament in Kiev, he said: "Believe me, there will be a victory parade - there will be for sure - in Ukraine's Sevastopol." Russia annexed the peninsula in March after a controversial referendum. In eastern...

The Statesman

Putin's geo-strategy backfires

RUSSIAN history entered a critical phase on Friday with Ukraine concluding the long-delayed trade agreement with Europe. In a mark of profound symbolism, the former Soviet satellite has reinforced its equation with the European Union, pending full membership. Profound no less will be the impact on international power-play; Kiev under President Petro Poroshenko, the confectionery magnate, has dealt a defiant blow to the Kremlin which has consistently opposed the pact. A former satellite has challenged the seat of authority...

Of godfathers and illusions

Of godfathers and illusions

PUTIN, the current Godfather in Russia has annexed Crimea, and by pointing guns at Ukraine has addressed the world in a fevered tone, speaking of a delusional alternative universe, wreaking of Dostoyevsky's Demons, and has managed to appeal to ethnic solidarity, just what Adolph Hitler had done during the Anschluss and the Sudeten...

Ukraine, Russia agree to work on truce extension

Ukraine, Russia agree to work on truce extension

Ukraine and Russia have agreed to work together to establish a bilateral ceasefire in eastern Ukraine, the office of the French president says. They are also working towards the establishment of effective border controls, it adds. It follows talks between the leaders of Ukraine, Russia, Germany and France to resolve the conflict in east Ukraine. A...

EU signs pacts with ex-USSR states

EU signs pacts with ex-USSR states

Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova have signed partnership agreements with the European Union, in a move strongly opposed by Russia. The pact - which would bind the three countries more closely to the West both economically and politically - is at the heart of the crisis in Ukraine. Russia said that while the signing of the...

Putin supports ‘Ukraine’ peace deal

Putin supports ‘Ukraine’ peace deal

Russian President Vladimir Putin has said he supports a peace plan tabled by Ukraine - as long as it includes "practical action" to start talks. He said Kiev must negotiate and make compromises with pro-Russian rebels for the plan to be "viable and realistic". Putin also said a week-long truce - declared by President Petro...

Ukraine fighting rages despite truce

Ukraine fighting rages despite truce

Pro-Russian separatists have carried out several attacks on Ukrainian troops despite a unilateral ceasefire declared by Kiev, Ukrainian officials say. They say at least six border guards were injured in shelling by the insurgents in the east overnight. The rebels earlier dismissed the truce called by President Petro Poroshenko, the first step of his peace...

Russia cuts Ukraine's gas after talks fail

Europe risked gas supply disruptions yesterday after Russia rejected an 11th-hour compromise deal and cut supplies to Ukraine in a feud that has further fractured East-West relations. Ukraine hosted the last-gasp talks hoping to keep an energy shortage from compounding the problems of the new pro-Western leaders as they confront a two-month separatist insurgency threatening the very survival of the ex-Soviet state. But Russia's state gas giant Gazprom said it had switched Ukraine to a pre-payment system at 0600 GMT --...

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