News / Europe

After Disputed E. Ukraine Votes, US Focuses on May 25 Poll

Washington Focuses on May 25 Ukraine Electioni
X
May 11, 2014 7:45 PM
As some eastern Ukrainians vote on possible independence from Kyiv, VOA's Michael Bowman reports that much of Washington remains focused on the country’s May 25 national elections.
Michael Bowman
Referendums went forward Sunday in eastern Ukraine in two regions seeking possible independence from Kyiv, despite widespread statements condemning the votes as illegal and illegitimate. The controversial votes were held as Ukraine prepares for a nationwide poll on May 25 to elect a new president.

Adding to the tension is that there is no sign Russian President Vladimir Putin is making good on last week’s promise to withdraw troops from the Ukrainian border, said U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel.

“They are not leaving as far as we can tell.  You would have to ask President Putin as to why he says they are leaving, when in fact they are not,” Hagel said on ABC's This Week news program.

Sanctions imposed by the United States and its NATO allies do not appear to have altered Moscow’s aggressive posture toward Ukraine.

“Russia continues to isolate itself for a short term gain.  The Russians may feel that somehow they are winning. But the world is not just about short term,” Hagel added.

Senator Kelly Ayotte, a Republican, wants the United States to target entire sectors of the Russian economy before Ukraine’s presidential elections May 25.

“This is the same playbook that we saw in Crimea playing out in eastern Ukraine.  It is an insurgency-type action by the Russians to create unrest,” Ayotte said.

“It is time for the administration to issue the sectoral sanctions before the [May 25] elections, so those elections will not be disrupted, so they can go forward.  I believe issuing the sanctions when the elections are interfered with are too late,” she said.

Senator Lindsey Graham, also a Republican, wants President Barack Obama to seek formal congressional approval of further punitive measures against Russia.

“Instead of doing this by executive order, Mr. President, come to the Congress and see if you could get bipartisan buy-in (support) for sectoral sanctions, which would send a stronger message to Putin.  It would hurt the Russian economy more, and I think it would bolster our allies,” Graham said.

Senator Chris Murphy, a Democrat, agrees Russia must pay a heavier price, but says the United States cannot do it alone.

“I think we should be pushing the Europeans hard for sectoral-based sanctions,” Murphy said.

“The fact is, the United States acting unilaterally on sanctions may harm our security interests, not advance them.  U.S. sanctions alone are not enough to change the calculus on the ground in Moscow. And ultimately they may give political impetus to Putin within Russia to continue his provocations,” he added.

Late Saturday, the Obama administration restated its threat to “impose greater costs on Russia", but did not say when it might do so.

You May Like

Video Migrants Caught in No-Man's Land In French Port

The deaths of hundreds of migrants in the Mediterranean this week has only recast the spotlight on the perils of reaching 'Fortress Europe' More

Video Westgate Mall Attack Survivors Confront Painful Memories

On anniversary of terror attack, survivors discuss how they have coped with trauma they experienced that day More

New Hints That Dark Matter Exists

New evidence from International Space Station hints at existence of dark matter and dark energy More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: peter from: montreal
May 12, 2014 10:59 PM
Guys let's not forget who is the real terrorist here...
yeah we can piss on the russians but
think about Tunisia , egypt ,libya , irak , afghanistan , syria ,
venezuela , north korea , iran , pakistan , yemen , shall i go on?
when you live in a glasshouse dont throw stones at the neighbours...


by: James McQuaid from: Lansing, MI
May 12, 2014 9:57 AM
The Russians are pathetic and disgusting; still bitching because the Serbs weren't allowed to carry out mass murder. These criminals have no shame or semblance of decency.


by: Wiktor Protsenko from: Kyiv
May 12, 2014 8:27 AM
In its unannounced war against Ukraine, Russia relies on covert operations which fall squarely within the definition of "international terrorism" under 18 U.S.C. § 2331.
Specifically, armed operatives of Russia, acting under disguise, attempt to influence the policy of Ukrainian government by intimidation or coercion. They also try to affect the conduct of a government by assassinations and kidnapping, taking by force government buildings, police posts and military bases of Ukraine.
This activity is being conducted on large scale and over prolonged time period, despite condemnation by the USA, G-7, NATO, EU and UN.
Please sign the petition urging the White House to officially designate Russia as "State sponsor of terrorism” - http://wh.gov/lwuL9
Such status of country would outlaw business of American companies with Russia. Even considering of the petition by Senate and President of USA creating great inconvenience Russian authorities.


by: HUANG JUN from: CHINA
May 12, 2014 5:25 AM
The May 25th referendum is illegal because it is held by an illegal government in Kiev, which is not recognized my many Ukrainians.


by: meanbill from: USA
May 11, 2014 11:26 PM
(The US, EU, used the NATO Charter, (created phony NATO rules overriding the UN Charter?), to bypass the UN Security Council, and forced Yugoslavia to give up their sovereign land, to create KOSOVO?) -- and Kosovo isn't recognized by a lot of countries either, is it?
NOW, Russia will use the same NATO rules, (for humanitarian reasons), to protect the Donetsk and Luhansk independent states, and people, from attacks on their (now) sovereign territory by the illegal pro-western Kiev coup leaders? -- "The Art of War" ..

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Migrants Caught in No-Man's Land Called Calaisi
X
Lisa Bryant
September 19, 2014 5:04 PM
The deaths of hundreds of migrants in the Mediterranean this week has only recast the spotlight on the perils of reaching Europe. And for those forunate enough to reach a place like Calais, France, only find that their problems aren't over. Lisa Bryant has the story.
Video

Video Migrants Caught in No-Man's Land Called Calais

The deaths of hundreds of migrants in the Mediterranean this week has only recast the spotlight on the perils of reaching Europe. And for those forunate enough to reach a place like Calais, France, only find that their problems aren't over. Lisa Bryant has the story.
Video

Video Westgate Siege Anniversary Brings Back Painful Memories

One year after it happened, the survivors of the terror attack on Nairobi's Westgate Shopping Mall still cannot shake the images of that tragic incident. For VOA, Mohammed Yusuf tells the story of victims still waiting for the answer to the question 'how could this happen?'
Video

Video Militant Assault in Syria Displaces Thousands of Kurds

A major assault by Islamic State militants on Kurds in Syria has sent a wave of new refugees to the Turkish border, where they were stopped by Turkish border security. Turkey is already hosting about 700,000 Syrian refugees who fled the civil war between the government and the opposition. But the government in Ankara has a history of strained relations with Turkey's Kurdish minority. Zlatica Hoke reports Turkey is asking for international help.
Video

Video CERN Accelerator Back in Business

The long upgrade of the Large Hadron Collider is over. The scientific instrument responsible for the discovery of the Higgs boson -- the so-called "God particle" -- is being brought up to speed in time for this month's 60th anniversary of the European Organization for Nuclear Research, known by its French acronym CERN. Physicists hope the accelerator will help them uncover more secrets about the origins of the universe. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Whaling Summit Votes to Uphold Ban on Japan Whale Hunt

The International Whaling Commission, meeting in Slovenia, has voted to uphold a court ruling banning Japan from hunting whales in the Antarctic Ocean. Conservationists hailed the ruling as a victory, but Tokyo says it will submit revised plans for a whale hunt in 2015. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Russian Economy Reeling After New Western Sanctions

A new wave of Western sanctions is hitting Russia’s economy hard. State-owned energy firms continue to bleed profits and Russia’s national currency plunged to a new low this week after the U.S. and the European Union announced new sanctions to punish Russia's aggressive stance in eastern Ukraine. But as Mil Arcega reports, the sanctions could also prove costly for European and American companies.
Video

Video Belgian Researchers Discover Way to Block Cancer Metastasis

Cancer remains one of the deadliest diseases, despite many new methods to combat it. Modern medicine has treatments to prevent the growth of primary tumor cells. But most cancer deaths are caused by metastasis, the stage when primary tumor cells change and move to other parts of the body. A team of Belgian scientists says it has found a way to prevent that process. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Mogadishu's Flood of Foreign Workers Leaves Somalis Out of Work

Unemployment and conflict has forced many young Somalians out of the country in search of a better life. But a newfound stability in the once-lawless nation has created hope — and jobs — which, some say, are too often being filled by foreigners. Abdulaziz Billow reports from Mogadishu.
Video

Video A Dinosaur Fit for Land and Water

Residents and tourists in Washington D.C. can now examine a life-size replica of an unusual dinosaur that lived almost a hundred million years ago in northern Africa. Scientists say studying the behemoth named Spinosaurus helps them better understand how some prehistoric animals adapted to life on land and in water. The Spinosaurus replica is on display at the National Geographic museum. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Iraqi Kurdistan Church Helps Christian Children Cope find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil

In the past six weeks, tens of thousands of Iraqi Christians have been forced to flee their homes by Islamic State militants and find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil. Despite U.S. airstrikes in the region, the prospect of people returning home is still very low and concerns are starting to grow over the impact this is having on the displaced youth. Sebastian Meyer reports from Irbil on how one church is coping.
Video

Video NASA Picks Boeing, SpaceX to Carry Astronauts Into Space

The U.S. space agency, NASA, has chosen Boeing and SpaceX companies to build the next generation of spacecraft that will carry U.S. astronauts to the International Space Station by the year 2017. The deal with private industry enables NASA to end its dependence on Russia to send space crews into low Earth orbit and back. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Future of Ukrainian Former President's Estate Uncertain

More than six months after Ukraine's former President Viktor Yanukovych fled revolution to Russia, authorities have yet to gain control of his palatial estate. Protesters occupy the grounds and opened it to tourists but they are also refusing to turn it over to the state. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Mezhigirya, just north of Kyiv.


Carnage and mayhem are part of daily life in northern Nigeria, the result of a terror campaign by the Islamist group Boko Haram. Fears are growing that Nigeria’s government may not know how to counter it, and may be making things worse. More

AppleAndroid