News / Europe

    Ukraine's PM Accuses Russian Military of Airspace Violations

    Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk visits the Santa Sophia Church in Rome, Apr. 26, 2014.
    Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk visits the Santa Sophia Church in Rome, Apr. 26, 2014.
    VOA News
    Ukraine's prime minister says Russian military aircraft have repeatedly crossed into Ukraine's airspace, in what he called Russian aggression designed to undermine global security.

    Arseniy Yatsenyuk told reporters Saturday that Russian forces had "violated" Ukrainian airspace seven times overnight.

    "We do understand the reason Russian military did it. The only reason is to provoke Ukraine to strike missile and to accuse Ukraine of waging the war to Russia," he said.

    On Friday, U.S. military officials also said Russian aircraft had flown into Ukrainian airspace, a charge Russia denies.

    In a Saturday statement carried by the Itar Tass news agency, Russia's Defense Ministry said its "objective monitoring of the air situation" had not detected any air border violations.

     
    Ukraine's Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk meets with Pope Francis during a private audience at the Vatican April 26, 2014Ukraine's Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk meets with Pope Francis during a private audience at the Vatican April 26, 2014
    x
    Ukraine's Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk meets with Pope Francis during a private audience at the Vatican April 26, 2014
    Ukraine's Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk meets with Pope Francis during a private audience at the Vatican April 26, 2014
    ​Prime Minister Yatsenyuk had made the accusation in Rome, after announcing he was cutting short a trip to Italy that included talks with Pope Francis.

    The pontiff told Yatsenyuk that he would "do everything possible" to promote peace in Ukraine, where pro-Russian separatists continue to occupy government buildings in about a dozen cities in eastern Ukraine.

    According to VOA correspondent Brian Padden, who is on the ground in the eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk, anti-American sentiment appears to be on the rise among pro-Russian separatists.

    An angry mob confronted him on Saturday as he tried to cover a rally in front of an occupied building. He says protesters accused him of supporting a "fascist" U.S. government.

    "As we were walking away, the crowd just got more angry and started following us and one guy tried to grab my colleague's camera," he said. "I tried to stop him. Then he grabbed me and another guy came with a baton. But before anything could really deteriorate into a real scuffle, the police kind of came between all of us and pulled us out and we just kept walking."

    International monitors

    In another development, Russia vowed to help free a team of international military observers who are being detained by pro-Russian separatists who suspect the observers are "NATO spies."

    On Friday, the separatists seized a bus carrying more than a dozen people from the Vienna-based Organization for the Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), near the town of Slovyansk.

    According to a senior State Department official, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry on Saturday demanded full Russian support "without preconditions" in efforts to free the European monitors.

    Kerry delivered his demand during a telephone call to his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov, who said Ukraine must stop its military operations in the country's southeastern region as part of efforts to end the crisis.

    In a statement, Moscow later said it is taking what it called "all measures to resolve the situation," but blamed Ukrainian authorities for failing to secure the safety of the OSCE team.

    In a Saturday statement, a White House official said U.S. President Barack Obama underscored the importance of solidarity in responding to Ukraine's crisis during talks with his European counterparts.

    Earlier, the Group of Seven major economies announced it had agreed to "move swiftly" on new sanctions against Russia because of its alleged actions in Ukraine.

    In a joint statement, the G-7 nations of Canada, Britain, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, and the U.S. said they would take measures to intensify "targeted sanctions" against Moscow.

    A U.S. official said the sanctions could begin as early as Monday.

    On Saturday, about 150 U.S. troops arrived in Lithuania. They are part of a U.S. contingent of about 600 troops being deployed to the region.

    Some information for this report comes from AP.

    You May Like

    Russia Sees Brexit Impact Widespread but Temporary

    Officials, citizens react to Britain’s vote to exit European Union with mix of pleasure, understanding and concern

    Obama Encourages Entrepreneurs to Seek Global Interconnection

    President tells entrepreneurs at global summit at Stanford University to find mentors, push ahead with new ideas on day after Britain voters decide to exit EU

    Video Some US Gun Owners Support Gun Control

    Defying the stereotype, Dave Makings says he'd give up his assault rifle for a comprehensive program to reduce gun violence

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: nadodi from: Asia
    April 27, 2014 6:15 AM
    "Ukraine's prime minister says Russian military aircraft have repeatedly crossed into Ukraine's airspace, in what he called Russian aggression designed to undermine global security."

    Is he eliginle to speak on a topic like this?!

    by: Gen from: Japan
    April 27, 2014 2:10 AM
    A sanction on Russia is only way to solve the problem? Is there a risk of escalating the problem? USA and EU nations try to repeat 'The Battle of Stalingrad'of economis against Russia on behalf of a Hitler? The problem is the cause of Russian people? I think the problem is in
    Ukraine. I think the sanction on Russia is not a right answer. It is crazy.

    by: meanbill from: USA
    April 26, 2014 5:50 PM
    Somebody famously said it; (What difference does it make) -
    The US and EU, are now looking like Rodney Dangerfield's the comedian, "Who got no respect" _ (not any respect at all) _ and they now make NATO (that is the greatest military force ever assembled in the history of the world), look helpless?
    WHAT kind of leaders of the US and EU are these, that like comedian Rodney Dangerfield's, "They get no respect" _ (not any respect at all) _ and the Russians won't answer, or return their phone calls, when they call them? -- (Hello, hello?)...

    by: Popsiq from: Buganda
    April 26, 2014 2:26 PM
    What were the indians thinking the night before Wounded Knee? And what would they have told reporters the cavalry sent into their camp? And this will be way worse than Wounded Knee.

    by: Fefe Bottomburp from: USA
    April 26, 2014 10:51 AM
    Since VOA is incapable of journalism, I will re-write the article for them as it should read...................The last time the Russian “Doomsday Plane” was seen in the air doing its trademark loops at 27,000 feet telegraphing Vladimir Putin was somewhere nearby, was on March 31, just days after the formerly Ukrainian region was annexed by the Kremlin. Until today, when over the past 4 hours, the Tu-214 has been quietly circling in position just shy of Finland and the Baltics, where as it is known, NATO has been depositing hundreds of western soldiers in a “defensive” build up.

    What is the “Doomsday Plane”? Here is a reminder:




    The Tupolev Tu-214SR is a Russian Special Mission Aircraft believed to act as a communication relay aircraft. This kind of aircraft is often dispatched by the Russian Air Force to accompany Putin’s presidential aircraft on its travels and for this reason it is considered the Russian version of the U.S. E-4B, a so-called “doomsday” plane, with an airborne command and control role.

    * * *

    America isn’t the only superpower with a “Doomsday Plane” for its head of state.When Russian President Vladimir Putin needs to escape danger, he hops aboard this top-secret flying communications center.

    A special missions variant of the Tupolev Tu-214 commercial transport aircraft, the Tu-214SR is Russia’s answer to the US E-4B, an airborne command and control plane built specifically for the Russian president’s use and considered successor to the Ilyushin Il-20 Coot, which has been in service for the better part of four decades. Produced by Aviastar SP and Kazan Aircraft Production Association, the twin-engine, long-endurance jet can carry 62 passengers with comparable range and speed to a Boeing 757. But unlike the Boeing, the Tu-214SR is packed to the gills with cutting-edge sensor and communications equipment.

    While significantly less is known about capabilities of the 214SR than the E-4B , we do know that it carries an MRC-411 multi-intelligence payload, which includes electronic intelligence (ELINT) sensors, side-looking Synthetic Aperture Radar (to spot incoming air threats from long range), and a variety of Signals Intelligence (SIGINT) and Communications Intelligence (COMINT) equipment. Four onboard generators provide ample amperage while a set of external fuel tanks allow the plane to remain aloft for trips up to 10,000 km.

    The two such 214SRs entered service in 2008 with the Presidential Special Applications Squad and are operated by a crew of four. However, the plane was only declassified last year when it made its public debut at the Moscow Air Show.Since then, it’s been spotted in the skies above both the Sochi Olympics, and more recently—and ominously—in Crimea.

    Why was the Doomsday Plane circling so close to the Baltics today of all days, and is this nothing but a welcome sign from Russia to the NATO build out in Eastern and Central Europe? And does it indicate that Putin was – as he usually does – either traveling in the vicinity, or is it an omen of something more ominous?

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Brexit Vote Plunges Global Markets Into Unchartered Territoryi
    X
    June 24, 2016 9:38 PM
    British voters plunged global markets into unknown territory after they voted Thursday to leave the European Union. The results of the Brexit vote, the term coined to describe the referendum, caught many off guard. Analysts say the resulting volatility could last for weeks, perhaps longer. Mil Arcega reports.
    Video

    Video Brexit Vote Plunges Global Markets Into Unchartered Territory

    British voters plunged global markets into unknown territory after they voted Thursday to leave the European Union. The results of the Brexit vote, the term coined to describe the referendum, caught many off guard. Analysts say the resulting volatility could last for weeks, perhaps longer. Mil Arcega reports.
    Video

    Video Orlando Shooting Changes Debate on Gun Control

    It’s been nearly two weeks since the largest mass shooting ever in the United States. Despite public calls for tighter gun control laws, Congress is at an impasse. Democratic lawmakers resorted to a 1960s civil rights tactic to portray their frustration. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti explains how the Orlando, Florida shooting is changing the debate.
    Video

    Video Tunisian Fishing Town Searches for Jobs, Local Development Solutions

    As the European Union tries to come to grips with its migrant crisis, some newcomers are leaving voluntarily. But those returning to their home countries face an uncertain future.  Five years after Tunisia's revolution, the tiny North African country is struggling with unrest, soaring unemployment and plummeting growth. From the southern Tunisian fishing town of Zarzis, Lisa Bryant takes a look for VOA at a search for local solutions.
    Video

    Video 'American Troops' in Russia Despite Tensions

    Historic battle re-enactment is a niche hobby with a fair number of adherents in Russia where past military victories are played-up by the Kremlin as a show of national strength. But, one group of World War II re-enactors in Moscow has the rare distinction of choosing to play western ally troops. VOA's Daniel Schearf explains.
    Video

    Video Experts: Very Few Killed in US Gun Violence Are Victims of Mass Shootings

    The deadly shooting at a Florida nightclub has reignited the debate in the U.S. over gun control. Although Congress doesn't provide government health agencies funds to study gun violence, public health experts say private research has helped them learn some things about the issue. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
    Video

    Video Trump Unleashes Broadside Against Clinton to Try to Ease GOP Doubts

    Recent public opinion polls show Republican Donald Trump slipping behind Democrat Hillary Clinton in the presidential election matchup for November. Trump trails her both in fundraising and campaign organization, but he's intensifying his attacks on the former secretary of state. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone reports.
    Video

    Video Muslim American Mayor Calls for Tolerance

    Syrian-born Mohamed Khairullah describes himself as "an American mayor who happens to be Muslim." As the three-term mayor of Prospect Park, New Jersey, he believes his town of 6,000 is an example of how ethnicity and religious beliefs should not determine a community's leadership. Ramon Taylor has this report from Prospect Park.
    Video

    Video Internal Rifts Over Syria Policy Could Be Headache for Next US President

    With the Obama administration showing little outward enthusiasm for adopting a more robust Syria policy, there is a strong likelihood that the internal discontent expressed by State Department employees will roll over to the next administration. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports.
    Video

    Video Senegal to Park Colorful ‘Cars Rapide’ Permanently

    Brightly painted cars rapide are a hallmark of Dakar, offering residents a cheap way to get around the capital city since 1976. But the privately owned minibuses are scheduled to be parked for good in late 2018, as Ricci Shryock reports for VOA.
    Video

    Video Florida Gets $1 Million in Emergency Government Funding for Orlando

    The U.S. government has granted $1 million in emergency funding to the state of Florida to cover the costs linked to the June 12 massacre in Orlando. U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch announced the grant Tuesday in Orlando, where she met with survivors of the shooting attack that killed 49 people. Zlatica Hoke reports.
    Video

    Video How to Print Impossible Shapes with Metal

    3-D printing with metals is rapidly becoming more advanced. As printers become more affordable, the industry is partnering with universities to refine processes for manufacturing previously impossible things. A new 3-D printing lab aims to bring the new technology closer to everyday use. VOA's George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Big Somali Community in Minnesota Observes Muslim Religious Feast

    Ramadan is widely observed in the north central US state of Minnesota, which a large Muslim community calls home. VOA Somali service reporter Mohmud Masadde files this report from Minneapolis, the state's biggest city.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora