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

Video One Year After Thai Coup, No End in Sight for Military Rule

Since carrying out the May 22, 2014 coup, the general has retired from the military but is still firmly in charge More

Video Afghan Economy Sinks As Troops Depart

Afghans are grappling with how exodus will affect country's fragile economy More

Video Scientists Say We Need Softer Robots

Today’s robots are mostly hard, rigid machines, with sharp edges and forceful movements, but researchers at Carnegie Mellon University say they should be softer and therefore safer More

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.
Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthroughi
X
May 22, 2015 10:23 AM
Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthrough

Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Europe Follows US Lead in Tackling ‘Conflict Minerals’

Metals mined from conflict zones in places like the Democratic Republic of Congo are often sold by warlords to buy weapons. This week European lawmakers voted to force manufacturers to prove that their supply chains are not inadvertently fueling conflicts and human rights abuses. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Class Tackles Questions of Race, Discrimination

Unrest in some U.S. cities is more than just a trending news item at Ladue Middle School in St. Louis, Missouri. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, it’s a focus of a multicultural studies class engaging students in wide-ranging discussions about racial tensions and police aggression.
Video

Video Mind-Controlled Prosthetics Are Getting Closer

Scientists and engineers are making substantial advances towards the ultimate goal in prosthetics – creation of limbs that can be controlled by the wearer’s mind. Thanks to sophisticated sensors capable of picking up the brain’s signals, an amputee in Iceland is literally bringing us one step closer to that goal. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Afghan Economy Sinks As Foreign Troops Depart

As international troops prepare to leave Afghanistan, and many foreign aid groups follow, Afghans are grappling with how the exodus will affect the country's fragile economy. Ayesha Tanzeem reports from the Afghan capital, Kabul.
Video

Video Poverty, Ignorance Force Underage Girls Into Marriage

The recent marriage of a 17-year old Chechen girl to a local police chief who was 30 years older and already had a wife caused an outcry in Russia and beyond. The bride was reportedly forced to marry and her parents were intimidated into giving their consent. The union spotlighted yet again the plight of many underage girls in developing countries. Zlatica Hoke reports poverty, ignorance and fear are behind the practice, especially in Asia and Africa.
Video

Video South Korea Marks Gwangju Uprising Anniversary

South Korea this week marked the 35th anniversary of a protest that turned deadly. The Gwangju Uprising is credited with starting the country’s democratic revolution after it was violently quelled by South Korea’s former military rulers. But as Jason Strother reports, some observers worry that democracy has recently been eroded.
Video

Video California’s Water System Not Created To Handle Current Drought

The drought in California is moving into its fourth year. While the state's governor is mandating a reduction in urban water use, most of the water used in California is for agriculture. But both city dwellers and farmers are feeling the impact of the drought. Some experts say the state’s water system was not created to handle long periods of drought. Elizabeth Lee reports from Ventura County, an agricultural region just northwest of Los Angeles.
Video

Video How to Clone a Mammoth: The Science of De-Extinction

An international team of scientists has sequenced the complete genome of the woolly mammoth. Led by the Swedish Museum of Natural History in Stockholm, the work opens the door to recreate the huge herbivore, which last roamed the Earth 4,000 years ago. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble considers the science of de-extinction and its place on the planet
Video

Video Blind Boy Defines His Life with Music

Cole Moran was born blind. He also has cognitive delays and other birth defects. He has to learn everything by ear. Nevertheless, the 12-year-old has had an insatiable love for music since he was born. VOA’s June Soh introduces us to the young phenomenal harmonica player.

VOA Blogs