News / Europe

Russia to Send Aid Convoy into Ukraine

Armed pro-Russian separatists stop a resident at a checkpoint outside Donetsk, Aug. 5, 2014.
Armed pro-Russian separatists stop a resident at a checkpoint outside Donetsk, Aug. 5, 2014.
VOA News

Russian President Vladimir Putin on Monday told European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso that Russia was coordinating with the International Committee of the Red Cross to send humanitarian aid to Ukraine.

“The Russian side, in collaboration with representatives of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), is sending a humanitarian convoy to Ukraine,'' the Kremlin said in a read-out of a telephone call between the two leaders.

The European Commission confirmed that the phone call took place but said that Barroso warned Putin against any military action in Ukraine.

“President Barroso warned against any unilateral military actions in Ukraine, under any pretext, including humanitarian,'' the commission said in a statement.

U.S. President Barack Obama, in phone call Monday, told Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko that any Russian intervention in Ukraine "without the formal, express consent and authorization of the Ukraine government would be unacceptable and a violation of international law," the White House said in a read-out of the call.

Ukraine, which has previously warned Russia against any unilateral initiatives, says it would support a ICRC-led mission with the participation of the EU, Russia, Germany and other partners, according to a read-out of the Obama-Poroshenko phone call as published on the Ukrainian leader’s website. Obama confirmed that “the U.S. intends to play an active part in such an international humanitarian mission,” the statement said.

French news agency AFP quoted Putin's spokesman Dmitry Peskov as saying that the convoy Russia plans to send to Ukraine will not have a "military escort." He said that the mission had been "agreed with" Kyiv and will be supervised by the International Committee of the Red Cross.

The ICRC, in a statement Monday, said no agreement on Russian participation is in place and said "practical details need to be clarified" before such a mission can move forward.  

NATO chief warns of 'high probability' of incursion

Meanwhile, NATO's secretary general says the alliance has seen no sign of Russian forces pulling back from the border with Ukraine and that there is "a high probability" Moscow will intervene militarily in the eastern part of the country.

NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen speaks during an interview with Reuters at alliance headquarters in Brussels August 11, 2014.NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen speaks during an interview with Reuters at alliance headquarters in Brussels August 11, 2014.
x
NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen speaks during an interview with Reuters at alliance headquarters in Brussels August 11, 2014.
NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen speaks during an interview with Reuters at alliance headquarters in Brussels August 11, 2014.

"We see the Russians developing the narrative and the pretext for such an operation under the guise of a humanitarian operation and we see a military buildup that could be used to conduct such illegal military operations in Ukraine," Anders Fogh Rasmussen told the Reuters news agency earlier Monday.

“Any Russian intervention under the guise of a humanitarian mission would be unjustified and illegal,” Rasmussen said.

Putin's spokesman Dmitry Peskov, meanwhile, said Monday that Russia will send humanitarian aid into eastern Ukraine, "if we can agree all details with all the partners." He said that if such an agreement is reached, the aid would be sent "immediately" because of the "tragic humanitarian situation" in the region.

Thousands of people in Ukraine's Russian-speaking east are reported short of water, medical aid and electricity, as Ukraine forces battle pro-Russian separatists trying to establish an autonomous region near the Russian border.

On Saturday, Ukraine claimed it had thwarted an attempt by Russia to send troops into Ukraine under a supposed agreement with the Red Cross and the guise of peacekeepers, with the aim of provoking a large-scale military conflict.  Moscow dismissed the allegation as a "fairy tale."

Last week, NATO said Russia had amassed around 20,000 combat-ready troops on Ukraine's eastern border.

NATO intervention?

Asked if NATO would intervene militarily in Ukraine if Russian forces did invade, Rasmussen all but ruled out direct involvement but said there would be consequences for Moscow.

“We are not considering military operations. If the Russians were to intervene further in Ukraine, I have no doubt that the international community would respond determinedly, notably through broader, deeper, tougher economic sanctions that would isolate Russia further,” he said.

Rasmussen accused Russia of creating the “disastrous humanitarian situation” in eastern Ukraine, and suggested that the best way for Moscow to end the crisis would be to “stop the flow of weapons and fighters and money into Ukraine and cease the support for armed separatists and engage in a constructive political dialogue.”

Russia has repeatedly denied direct involvement in the conflict in Ukraine.

You May Like

Photogallery Pistorius Sentenced, Taken to Prison

Pistorius, convicted of culpable homicide in shooting death of girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp, will likely serve about 10 months of five-year sentence, before completing it under house arrest More

UN to Aid Central Africa in Polio Vaccinations

Synchronized vaccinations will be conducted after Cameroon reports a fifth case of the wild polio virus in its territory More

WHO: Ebola Vaccine May Be in Use by Jan.

WHO assistant director Dr. Marie Paule Kieny says clinical trials of Ebola vaccines are underway or planned in Europe, US and Africa More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Igor from: Russia
August 12, 2014 5:37 AM
The West and those in power in Kiev know for sure that people in the East are dying from the lack of food, water, medicine and other basic needs. But they have done nothing to help except bombing and shelling and preventing others' humanitarian missions. Their butality and inhumanity must be stopped!


by: josel from: miami
August 11, 2014 5:51 PM
I don't know why, but I have a bad feeling about all this. I think that it won't end well for Ukraine.

In Response

by: Igor from: Russia
August 12, 2014 12:44 PM
You are right. One half of the nation wants closer ties with the West because of their own interests. The other half wants closer ties with Russia with the same reason. They failed persuade one another to accept their views and decided to kill each other. The outside forces pour more and more oil into the fire because of their own interests. Crazy enough!


by: putintokillyou from: Germany
August 11, 2014 3:56 PM
If EU and USA are so weak nation like Ukraine,which wants to be a part of EU and west,so what are we worth of?


by: maithe from: Paris, France
August 11, 2014 3:25 PM
I don't understand why the ICRC "has had no immediate comment" (quote)
If people are really in a "tragic humanitarian situation" (quote)why and what the ICRC is waiting for ? Some sort of "OK " ? Who is supposed to give it ? And why NATO and not the UN is mixed up with an humanitarian story together with the ICRC ???


by: Dr Masta Marina from: Finland
August 11, 2014 2:55 PM
do you really think Jose Manuel Barrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrosso "warned Putin against any unilateral military actions in Ukraine, under any pretext, including humanitarian..."??? if you do, you have no idea of the European idiotic cowardly corruption.


by: meanbill from: USA
August 11, 2014 1:22 PM
CRAZY isn't it?.... NATO fears Russia will use the same NATO rules, "for humanitarian reasons" to invade Ukraine, like the US, EU, and NATO forces used to attack Yugoslavia, to form the (contested) country of Kosovo....

PS;... By NATO using a vague interpretation of the NATO Charter, they said they were authorized under the NATO rules, to bypass the UN Security Council Charter, and "for humanitarian reasons" attack and wage war on tiny Yugoslavia for Kosovo, (and now), the US and NATO are afraid Russia will use those same NATO rules, "for humanitarian reasons" to invade Ukraine..... What goes around, comes back around, like those NATO rules, that didn't violate the UN Charter?... CRAZY isn't it?..... (Now NATO say's Russia will violate the UN Charter, if they use the NATO rules?)

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rulesi
X
October 21, 2014 12:20 AM
European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video US ‘Death Cafes’ Put Focus on the Finale

In contemporary America, death usually is a topic to be avoided. But the growing “death café” movement encourages people to discuss their fears and desires about their final moments. VOA’s Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Ebola Orphanage Opens in Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone's first Ebola orphanage has opened in the Kailahun district. Hundreds of children orphaned since the beginning of the Ebola outbreak face stigma and rejection with nobody to care for them. Adam Bailes reports for VOA about a new interim care center that's aimed at helping the growing number of children affected by Ebola.
Video

Video Young Nairobi Tech Innovator on 'Track' in Security Business

A 24-year-old technology innovator in Nairobi has invented a tracking device that monitors and secures cars. He has also come up with what he claims is the most robust audio-visual surveillance system yet. As Lenny Ruvaga reports from the Kenyan capital, his innovations are offering alternative security solutions.
Video

Video Latinas Converting to Islam for Identity, Structure

Latinos are one of the fastest growing groups in the Muslim religion. According to the Pew Research Center, about 6 percent of American Muslims are Latino. And a little more than half of new converts are female. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti travelled to Miami, Florida -- where two out of every three residents is Hispanic -- to learn more.
Video

Video Exclusive: American Joins Kurds' Anti-IS Fight

The United States and other Western nations have expressed alarm about their citizens joining Islamic State forces in Syria and Iraq. In a rare counterpoint to the phenomenon, an American has taken up arms with the militants' Syrian Kurdish opponents. Elizabeth Arrott has more in this exclusive profile by VOA Kurdish reporter Zana Omer in Ras al Ayn, Syria.
Video

Video South Korea Confronts Violence Within Military Ranks

Every able-bodied South Korean male between 18 and 35 must serve for 21 to 36 months in the country’s armed forces, depending upon the specific branch. For many, service is a rite of passage to manhood. But there are growing concerns that bullying and violence come along with the tradition. Reporter Jason Strother has more from Seoul.
Video

Video North Carolina Emerges as Key Election Battleground

U.S. congressional midterm elections will be held on November 4th and most political analysts give Republicans an excellent chance to win a majority in the U.S. Senate, which Democrats now control. So what are the issues driving voters in this congressional election year? VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone traveled to North Carolina, one of the most politically competitive states in the country, to find out.
Video

Video Comanche People Maintain Pride in Their Heritage

The Comanche (Indian nation) once were called the “Lords of the Plains,” with an empire that included half the land area of current day Texas, large parts of Oklahoma, New Mexico, Kansas and Colorado.The fierceness and battle prowess of these warriors on horseback delayed the settlement of most of West Texas for four decades. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Lawton, Oklahoma, that while their warrior days are over, the 15,000 members of the Comanche Nation remain a proud people.
Video

Video Turkey Campus Attacks Raise Islamic Radicalization Fears

Concerns are growing in Turkey of Islamic radicalization at some universities, after clashes between supporters of the jihadist group Islamic State (IS) or ISIS, and those opposed to the extremists. Pro-jihadist literature is on sale openly on the streets of Istanbul. Critics accuse the government of turning a blind eye to radicalism at home, while Kurds accuse the president of supporting IS - a charge strongly denied. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.

All About America

AppleAndroid