News / Europe

Ukraine President Ends Unilateral Cease-Fire

  • Pro-Russian fighters guard their military unit in the city of Donetsk, eastern Ukraine, June 27, 2014.
  • A just-released member of OSCE Special Monitoring Mission in Ukraine gets out of a vehicle next to Alexander Borodai, prime minister of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic, Donetsk, Ukraine, June 26, 2014.
  • A man sorts donated clothes at a former concert hall converted into a center for collecting humanitarian aid for refugees in Donetsk, Ukraine, June 26, 2014.
  • A man says goodbye to his relatives as they prepare to cross the border into Russia at the checkpoint in Izvaryne, Luhansk region, eastern Ukraine, June 26, 2014.
  • Pro-Russian separatists man a road checkpoint outside the town of Lysychansk in the Luhansk region of eastern Ukraine, June 24, 2014.
  • A coal miner walks at Privilnyanska coal mine damaged by shelling in the town of Pryvillya in Luhansk, Ukraine, June 24, 2014.
  • People block a car carrying Russian Ambassador in Ukraine Mikhail Zurabov and Ukrainian lawmaker Nestor Shufrich after a meeting with leaders of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic and Luhansk People's Republic in Donetsk, Ukraine, June 23, 2014.
  • People with their faces covered take part in a pro-Ukrainian anti-separatist rally near the Kyiv Pechersk Lavra, June 22, 2014.
  • An activist from a pro-Ukrainian radical youth group stands in a front of riot police outside the Russian embassy in Kyiv, June 22, 2014.
  • Riot police protect an office of the Russian Sberbank after people attacked it with the stones in Kyiv, June 22, 2014.
Images from Ukraine
VOA News

Ukraine's President Petro Poroshenko says he will not renew a 10-day unilateral cease-fire in eastern Ukraine, vowing instead to mount new attacks on pro-Russian rebels that he says "will liberate our land."

Poroshenko -- in a website statement early Tuesday -- said his decision was "a response to terrorists, rebels, looters," and all those he said are "paralyzing the economy of the region."  

A short while later, he delivered the same message in a nationally televised address, as Kyiv's Interfax-Ukraine news agency quoted separatists in the eastern city of Kramatorsk as saying combat has resumed.

The fragile truce, which expired Monday night, was touted as a chance for separatists to disarm and to start broader negotiations aimed at an amnesty and new regional elections.  But rebels did not disarm, and the Kyiv government cited numerous instances of cease-fire violations since its June 20 declaration.

Poroshenko already had extended the cease-fire from seven to 10 days, as part of a push to end fighting near the Russian border that has killed more than 400 people since April.

The Ukraine leader's decision followed four-way talks on Monday with Russian President Vladimir Putin, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Francois Holland.

An earlier statement from French President Francois Holland's office said all four leaders voiced support for a third round of talks between Ukrainian government representatives and separatist leaders. The earlier rounds of talks between the two sides were held in the eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk.

The four-way phone call took place as deadlines on both the cease-fire in eastern Ukraine and for Russia to avoid new EU sanctions were to expire late Monday.

The European Union is threatening more penalties against Russia if it does not use its influence on the separatists to convince them to cease their armed rebellion.  

Despite the ceasefire, fighting has continued in eastern Ukraine, where separatists have seized areas and clashed with Ukrainian forces for the past few months.  

A Russian state-owned television station said Monday one of its cameramen was killed overnight while reporting in Donetsk.

An official with the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe said Monday that the number of international observers in eastern Ukraine cannot be increased unless the security situation improves.

Alexander Hug, the OSCE’s deputy chief of monitors in Ukraine, said weapons and checkpoints must “disappear” to allow observers freedom of movement.

Pro-Russian rebels freed four OSCE monitors Saturday, a month after they were abducted in the region of Luhansk.

Four others seized in the neighboring Donetsk region were let go earlier in the week. OSCE officials say all are in good health.

Some information for this report provided by Reuters and AP.

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Comment Sorting
by: Robert from: USA
July 01, 2014 7:03 AM
Putin's Russia is the new Nazi Germany. The claims of protecting Russians elsewhere echo exactly the words of Hitler in 1936. Russian press is controlled by the state. And while people can complain about the western press, it is so obviously free and varied. Opinions are free and made without fear of reprisal.
People act like joining the EU is some evil thing. The EU is an inclusive block seeking commerce and peace.

The EU would welcome Russia as a partner. Instead Putin, and it seems the whole Russian nation are willing to start a war over memories of the Soviet Union ,which by the way, was more evil than Nazi Germany, if that is even possible. It is going to come down to this. Either both sides, Russia and the west will agree to the same truths, or a major war will break out. Ultimately, the west will prevail,but millions of lives will be lost.
In Response

by: Robert from: USA
July 01, 2014 8:10 PM
And the Russians shelling Chechnya wasn't the same thing! The Ukrainian govt is shelling armed gangs spurred on by Russia.
I guess it is time for the big war, eh Andrei? Luckily the West will win. Perhaps then Russian society will learn to shed itself of its sad sorry history.
In Response

by: Andrei
July 01, 2014 12:33 PM
Robers, don't try to troll everybody into the german nazi crap. The Ukrainian govt is shelling their own people. Now talk about that.

by: Eric from: Ukraine
July 01, 2014 12:56 AM
I feel a bit disappointed about the West's reaction to how Russia sends troop into Ukraine to kill Ukrainians and grab land. Everybody knows that Russia does it!!! Ukrainians pay too much to be a part of the West,but EU and USA do little to support us.

by: matt from: usa
July 01, 2014 12:17 AM
Seriously....I was there when the protests startec last fall and winter visiting a friend..and again last May. You people need to get your fact straoght before mouthing off. Russia is the ones who are tp blame...specifically Putin. Hes pissed because they do not want nothing to do with him and want to be left alone. So called separists are mostly hired thugs by Putin.

by: Igor from: Russia
June 30, 2014 11:07 PM
In fact, What Poroshenko called an "unilateral cease-fire" was not a cease-fire at all where journalists and mothers of soldiers were shot at without mercy. But the Western media continue to cover the truth by deliberately not mentioning it or giving details of it at all.
In Response

by: 1worldnow from: Earth
July 01, 2014 3:05 AM
That is correct Igor. Media, regardless, is only aimed at informing those who wish to believe their point of view. Even in our own nation, it depends on the channel you are watching, or the newpaper you are reading. Even with all the journalists from all over the world were in the same room interviewing the same person for 2 minutes, you would have hours of journalism with different angles on the 3 words the person said. Journalists are usually on the scene of a disaster before help even arrives. Look at Princess Diana, whether you like her or not, the journalists were more interested in getting pictures than helping her, she was still alive!!!!! Just like the terrible deeds your country does, your journalists will not entertain them for others to read. Yes, western journalism is geared for the interests of westerners, that's always been obvious. People a like sheep and just hungry for whatever is served. You can do us all a favor and share some of your journalists stories here or share the links. None of us will know the truth unless we here from both sides. You and me can finger point and blame all day, but people are dying, and more will die. Ukraine is committing inhumane acts of terror, so is Russia when your country gave weapons to rebels to kill Ukraine civillians in their own country. Both sides should be held accountable, period. Neither side is innocent, but the innocent always pay the price. It's time for that to stop!

by: gen from: japan
June 30, 2014 11:03 PM
Someone should record this disaster.
Pro-russian president toppled,ultra right sectors violated human right,the separatists's how they battle,Russian diplomats efforts avoinding war.Porochenko's tricks,Someone should make a true story filmes.This story would be over the true story of JFK.

by: gen from: japan
June 30, 2014 10:51 PM
Fierce battle would resume.more fierce.Poroshenko knew from first that ceasefire would be short because they sign agreement with EU. And while russian speaking civilians flee the country,Kiev government will attack again the separatists and kill them all.It is Poroshenko is dirty trick.
Russia would be able to endure such brutal trick?

by: Mike from: Canada
June 30, 2014 10:31 PM
I hope Russia is finally up to the task of stepping in and seizing eastern Ukraine is part of new Russia. That is the only way the violence will end. The rest of Ukraine will just have to grin and bear it. The rebels are stockpiled and they will not go out without a fight
In Response

by: 1worldnow from: Earth
July 01, 2014 2:48 AM
Right on Mike! Well said. Go Putin, go! Keep giving weapons and tanks, and anything else needed to KILL Ukrainians on THEIR OWN SOIL! RIght on! Hey Putin, will it be OK if the US takes British Columbia? Love Vancouver! Canadians will have to just GRIN AND BEAR IT! Hurray for Mike!

People are going to die, on both sides. People! Their lives will end because Mike says they will have to grin and bear it. People will be left in ruin. Those people that will suffer in the crossfire, will someone send Mike over there and tell them to grin and bear while they hold their dying babies? Hey Mike, I bet if the USA was arming those same rebels, your tone would be much different. But who cares about peace, that's a stupid word! Hurray for Mike, let the slaughter begin. Oh, better pop some pocorn! Maybe they will have the bloodshed on PPV. Come on over, Mike, we'll have fun watching it together. I have Kroft Dinner!

by: Cayman
June 30, 2014 2:21 PM
This has to be not only negotiations! If they make an agreement on something it has to have a real power of law and actions! Because for right now it seems that Russia is giving the right solutions to the problem Ukraine is making like: yer, fine, we do this! All for the peace!" And as a result is nothing! Ukraine can not keep their promises and accusing Russia in escalation of the conflict! And Europe thinks about new sanctions for Russia!

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