News / Europe

Clinton Reaffirms Support for Non-Aligned Ukraine

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton Friday reaffirmed U.S. support for a non-aligned Ukraine, saying the notion Kyiv should be oriented toward either the United States or Russia is a "false choice." Clinton held talks in Kyiv with key Ukrainian political figures including President Viktor Yanukovych.

Mr. Yanukovych, who scored a narrow election victory in February to return as Ukraine's president after a six-year absence, is widely seen as being more pro-Russian than his predecessor, Victor Yushchenko.

But he has sent mixed signals in his first months in office, curtailing Ukrainian ties with NATO, but also promising to continue democratic reforms and pledging at last April's Washington summit on nuclear security to give up Ukraine's stockpile of highly enriched uranium.

At a joint press event with Mr. Yanukovych, Clinton said Ukrainians should resist those trying to force their country into a choice between aligning with Russia or the West.

Clinton Reaffirms Support for Non-Aligned Ukraine
Clinton Reaffirms Support for Non-Aligned Ukraine

"We believe that is a false choice. Ukraine is an independent nation and we hope Ukraine will have good relations with its neighbors, including Russia, and that Ukraine will pursue close constructive relationships with the United States and countries of the European Union," said Clinton.  "We do not believe in the concept of spheres of influence. We believe it is up to Ukrainians to chart your own course to your own future," she stressed.

Mr. Yanukovych, for his part, welcomed U.S. support for Ukrainian economic reforms and in critical negotiations under way this week on an International Monetary Fund aid package for Ukraine.

Heard through an interpreter, the Ukrainian president said his government is grateful for consistent American support for its independence since the breakup of the Soviet Union.

"We highly appreciate the consistent position of the United States, that was reaffirmed today, to guarantee Ukraine's sovereignty, independence, territorial integrity and the inviolability of its borders. This is of special importance to Ukraine as a European, non-bloc nation. I want to emphasize that the United States of America is our reliable strategic partner."

The talks here also covered energy, including Ukraine's often problematic role as host of a critical  pipeline for Russian gas supplies to Europe.

Mr. Yuschenko told Clinton Ukraine will seek financing from Russia and Western Europe for a new gas pipeline across its territory to assure uninterrupted supplies.

Clinton said economic reforms could clear the way for U.S. investments to help develop Ukraine's own energy resources including gas from shale deposits and civil nuclear energy.

The secretary also met at her Kyiv hotel with opposition leader and former prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko, Mr. Yanukovych's arch-rival who faces possible prosecution for alleged misdeeds in office.

At an earlier meeting with Ukrainian Foreign Minister Kostyantyn Hryschchenko, Clinton again said the U.S. administration intends to pursue better relations with Moscow despite revelations this week of an alleged Russian spy ring in the United States.

The secretary cited President Obama's description of the spy affair as something from the 20th century.

"We are now 10 years into the 21st century and we are looking toward the future, and are committed to taking actions which are in the interests of American security and values, and also by the way in the interests of the kind of future that the leaders of Russia tell us they wish to have for their own people."

Clinton declined comment on whether any Russian officials identified as handlers of the alleged spies might be expelled from the United States.

Senior U.S. officials earlier this week appeared to rule out any diplomatic repercussions over the affair.

You May Like

Turkey: No Ransom Paid for Release of Hostages Held by IS Militants

President Erdogan hails release of hostages as diplomatic success but declines to be drawn on whether their release freed Ankara's hand to take more active stance against insurgents More

Audio Sierra Leone Ends Ebola Lockdown

Health ministry says it has reached 75 percent of its target of visiting 1.5 million homes to locate infected, educate population about virus More

US Pivot to Asia Demands Delicate Balancing Act

As tumult in Middle East distracts Obama administration, efforts to shift American focus eastward appear threatened More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Natural Gas Export Plan Divides Maryland Towni
X
Deborah Block
September 21, 2014 2:12 PM
A U.S. power company that has been importing natural gas now wants to export it. If approved, its plant in Lusby, Maryland, would likely be the first terminal on the United States East Coast to export liquefied natural gas from American pipelines. While some residents welcome the move because it will create jobs, others oppose it, saying the expansion could be a safety and environmental hazard. VOA’s Deborah Block examines the controversy.
Video

Video Natural Gas Export Plan Divides Maryland Town

A U.S. power company that has been importing natural gas now wants to export it. If approved, its plant in Lusby, Maryland, would likely be the first terminal on the United States East Coast to export liquefied natural gas from American pipelines. While some residents welcome the move because it will create jobs, others oppose it, saying the expansion could be a safety and environmental hazard. VOA’s Deborah Block examines the controversy.
Video

Video Difficult Tactical Battle Ahead Against IS Militants in Syria

The U.S. president has ordered the military to intensify its fight against the Islamic State, including in Syria. But how does the military conduct air strikes in a country that is not a U.S. ally? VOA correspondent Carla Babb reports from the Pentagon.
Video

Video Iran, World Powers Seek Progress in Nuclear Talks

Iran and the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council plus Germany, known as the P5 + 1, have started a new round of talks on Iran's nuclear program. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports that as the negotiations take place in New York, a U.S. envoy is questioning Iran's commitment to peaceful nuclear activity.
Video

Video Alibaba Shares Soar in First Day of Trading

China's biggest online retailer hit the market Friday -- with its share price soaring on the New York Stock Exchange. The shares were priced at $68, but trading stalled at the opening, as sellers held onto their shares, waiting for buyers to bid up the price. More on the world's biggest initial public offering from VOA’s Bernard Shusman in New York.
Video

Video Obama Goes to UN With Islamic State, Ebola on Agenda

President Obama goes to the United Nations General Assembly to rally nations to support a coalition against Islamic State militants in Iraq and Syria. He also will look for nations to back his plan to fight the Ebola virus in West Africa. As VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports, Obama’s efforts reflect new moves by the U.S. administration to take a leading role in addressing world crises.
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 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 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.


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