News / Europe

NATO Suspends Cooperation with Russia

NATO Suspends Cooperation With Russiai
|| 0:00:00
...  
🔇
X
Scott Stearns
April 02, 2014 12:46 AM
NATO is suspending all practical cooperation with Russia and is working to strengthen defense cooperation with Eastern Europe in response to Russia's takeover of Crimea. VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports from NATO headquarters in Brussels, where officials are questioning Russia's claim that it is pulling some troops from the Ukrainian border.
Related video by Scott Stearns from Brussels
VOA News
NATO will suspend "all practical civilian and military cooperation" with Russia because of Moscow's annexation of Ukraine's Crimea.

In a joint statement following a meeting about Ukraine in Brussels, NATO foreign ministers said that the alliance's political dialogue with Russia can continue as necessary. They said they do not recognize Russia's seizure of Ukraine's Crimean peninsula, calling it "illegal and illegitimate." They urged Moscow to take immediate steps to return to compliance with international law.

NATO and Ukraine have also agreed to intensify cooperation and promote defense reforms, according to a NATO statement released Tuesday.

The Associated Press quoted an unnamed NATO official who attended the meeting as saying that the foreign ministers agreed on a number of measures that may be taken, including the deployment and reinforcement of military assets in eastern NATO members such as Poland and the Baltic states, an increase of readiness levels for the NATO rapid response force, and a possible review of NATO crisis response plans, military training, and exercise schedules.

The foreign ministers also said they are committed to intensifying cooperation with Ukraine to strengthen its ability to provide for its own security.

The announcement came on the same day Russia warned Ukraine against aligning with NATO, saying Kyiv's previous attempts to move closer to the defense alliance had negative consequences.

"[Past attempts] led to a freezing of Russian-Ukrainian political contacts, a headache between NATO and Russia and...to a division in Ukrainian society," the Russian Foreign Ministry.

Sanctions draw Russia's ire

Russia has accused U.S. banking giant J. P. Morgan of illegally blocking a cash transfer from its embassy in Kazakhstan to a Russian company.                                                                                                                                                                                                                      
A ministry statement called J.P. Morgan's move "unacceptable, illegal and absurd" and warned the blockage will "have consequences" for the U.S. embassy in Russia.
 
The Russian Foreign Ministry linked the blockage to U.S. sanctions slapped on Moscow for its seizure of Ukraine's Crimea peninsula.
 
There was no immediate comment from U.S. officials or J. P. Morgan.
 
The U.S. Congress on Tuesday approved the sanctions announced by President Barack Obama last month and also gave final approval to $1 billion in loan guarantees to the Ukrainian government.
 
The White House said President Obama welcomes Congress' approval of the sanctions and the loan, saying the money will provide crucial support to Ukraine.
 
Also Tuesday, the Russian energy monopoly Gazprom, which supplies much of Ukraine's natural gas, announced a 40 percent increase in the price of gas sold to Ukraine.
 
European consumers receive about one-quarter of their gas from Gazprom, with most of those supplies delivered through Soviet-era pipelines running through Ukraine to the West.

Meanwhile, U.S. sanctions announced by President Barack Obama last month, were approved Tuesday by U.S. lawmakers, along with $1 billion in loan guarantees for the Kyiv government.

Military moves

NATO's secretary-general said Tuesday that he'd seen no evidence that Russia is withdrawing its forces from the border with Ukraine.

"Unfortunately, I cannot confirm that Russia is withdrawing its troops,'' Anders Fogh Rasmussen told reporters ahead of the NATO meeting in Brussels.

So far, NATO has increased air patrols over the Baltics and the United States is planning more intense military exercises with Poland.
 
  • People stand outside a closed McDonalds restaurant. The fast food restaurant chain announced this week that it is shuttering its three outlets in the Crimean peninsula over unspecified operations issues, Simferopol, Crimea, April 4, 2004.
  • People gather outside a currency exchange office in the Crimean city of Simferopol, April 4, 2014.
  • People stand in line as they wait to enter a branch of the Sberbank of Russia bank in the Crimean city of Simferopol, April 4, 2014.
  • Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatseniuk said during an interview with Reuters that the Kyiv government will stick to unpopular austerity measures "as the price of independence" as Russia steps up pressure on Ukraine to destabilize, Kyiv, April 3, 2014.
  • Ukraine's acting President Oleksandr Turchynov visits a military exhibition near the settlement of Desna in Chernigov region, Ukraine, April 2, 2014.
  • Ukrainian soldiers watch as an army medic helicopter flies above during a military exhibition near the settlement of Desna in Chernigov region, April 2, 2014.
  • People pass by barricades near the Dnipro Hotel in Kyiv, April 1, 2014.
  • Self-defense activists pass by the Dnipro Hotel in Kyiv, April 1, 2014.
  • Members of the Ukrainian far-right radical group Right Sector leave their headquarters in Dnipro Hotel as police special forces stand guard, Kyiv, April 1, 2014.
  • Commuters walk along railway lines next to Ukrainian tanks ready to depart from Crimea near Simferopol, March 31, 2014.
  • Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev visits Crimea to consider priorities for its economic development, Simferopol, March 31, 2014.
  • Ukrainians, in accordance with Orthodox Church tradition of marking the 40th day since death, remember those who lost their lives during pro-Europe protests in Kyiv, March 30, 2014. 

Diplomats say the ministers could decide to step up NATO military exercises or possibly set up permanent bases in Eastern Europe, closer to the Russian border.

Romania's president informed the lower house of parliament Tuesday that the United States is seeking permission to increase the number of troops and aircraft it has stationed at an airbase in the NATO ally.

Mihail Kogalniceanu air base on the Black Sea is a major hub for U.S. troops leaving Afghanistan and is located not far from Ukraine's Crimea peninsula, annexed last month by Russia.

Russia pulled back hundreds of troops from its border with Ukraine Monday, but tens of thousands still remain.
 
Former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko, right, speaks during a news conference in Kyiv, Ukraine, April 1, 2014.Former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko, right, speaks during a news conference in Kyiv, Ukraine, April 1, 2014.
x
Former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko, right, speaks during a news conference in Kyiv, Ukraine, April 1, 2014.
Former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko, right, speaks during a news conference in Kyiv, Ukraine, April 1, 2014.

Call for early elections

 Presidential candidate Yulia Tymoshenko is calling for early parliamentary elections in Ukraine.

Tymoshenko is a strong proponent of cutting Ukraine's dependence on Russia.

"I think that it's high time to take all steps to put an end to the whole system of Ukraine's dependence on the Russian Federation because the Russian Federation blatantly uses all our contacts in the energy sphere, in the economic, humanitarian and military spheres," she said at a Tuesday news conference. "That is why the end of Ukraine's dependence on Russia is a strategic aim of Ukraine."
 
Members of the Ukrainian far-right radical group Right Sector leave their headquarters in Dnipro Hotel as police special forces stand guard in Kyiv, April 1, 2014.Members of the Ukrainian far-right radical group Right Sector leave their headquarters in Dnipro Hotel as police special forces stand guard in Kyiv, April 1, 2014.
x
Members of the Ukrainian far-right radical group Right Sector leave their headquarters in Dnipro Hotel as police special forces stand guard in Kyiv, April 1, 2014.
Members of the Ukrainian far-right radical group Right Sector leave their headquarters in Dnipro Hotel as police special forces stand guard in Kyiv, April 1, 2014.

Meanwhile, in Ukraine on Tuesday, the parliament voted to disarm illegal armed groups.

Police shut down the Kyiv base of a far-right nationalist group that played a key role in the ouster of Viktor Yanukovych after three people were injured in a shooting incident.

"The Ukrainian people demand order," said acting President Oleksandr Turchinov. "Those who have weapons can only belong to the armed forces of Ukraine, the national guard and the security service of Ukraine or other military groups.''


 

You May Like

Republican Majority in Congress Off to Rough Start

Standoff over Homeland Security funding exposes philosophical, tactical problems within party More

Pakistan Blocks Baloch Activist from US Trip

Human Rights Commission of Pakistan slams Islamabad officials for stopping people from leaving country to attend human rights conference More

Video Muslims Long Thrived in North Carolina Before Students Killed

Idyll shattered February 10, when three Muslim university students living in Chapel Hill were gunned down by a neighbor More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Emmanuel.o from: Nigeria
April 02, 2014 1:37 PM
Rusia's downfall is at hand.

by: Yury from: Russia
April 02, 2014 6:54 AM
All your chatter nobody cares because it ravings of a madman

by: Joseph effiong from: calabar - nigeria
April 02, 2014 12:23 AM
USA and EU should stand against Russia's aggression and protect Ukraine's sovereignty. Russia should know this is no Soviet era.

by: Oghenejuwe from: Nigeria
April 01, 2014 2:45 PM
It is imperative to expedite action against Russia to avert any form of encroachment on d sovereignty of any nation by any country in d future

by: Not Again from: Canada
April 01, 2014 1:23 PM
It is good to see that NATO is starting to take some concrete steps to decouple itself from Russia. The interim Ukraine (Ukr) gvmt, needs to accelerate its preparations for the elections, ensuring that all Ukr regions are represented, including the Crimea region and also the Tatars, and then it needs to proceed with a fair and free election, under close observation of international monitors. Following the election the new Ukr gvmt needs to commence negotiations with Russia, to have Russia remove itself from Uk territory; if these fail, or ASAP, the ICC is the next step, hundredths of thousands of Uk are displaced from their state; the ICC is the needed step, and Ukr gvmt need to require compensation in the order of 200 to 300 Trillion Euros from Russia. At the same time

Ukr must get technical help from the West to modernize and update all its institutions, including its security services, and most its important aspect is its economy. Any outstanding dets by Ukr, has wrt Russia, must not be paid to Russia,until the compensation issue is resolved at the ICC.

All Russian assets need to be frozen, so that they can be used to pay for the expected compensation, that Russia will need to pay to the Uk over its occupation of the Crimea. The sooner these processes start, the better for all involved parties. Potentially the ICC case needs to be started asap, given that Russia does not wish to remove its occupation of the Crimea. Instead of continuing holding lectures with grandstanding politicians, especially in the EU, actions will ensure that the situation does not continue to deteriorate. Legal action, by the Ukr gvmt maybe the only way to resolve the standoff in the Crimea.

by: Mrs. Hildegard Vomit from: Frankfurt
April 01, 2014 11:29 AM
NATO continues to insist Russia is massing troops on the border of Ukraine despite a lack of evidence. The alliance will now use the phantom military build-up to increase its presence in Eastern Europe. CNN, a documented propaganda asset of the Army’s Fourth Psychological Operations Group, insists Russia’s phantom troops will invade this weekend.

“Unfortunately, I cannot confirm that Russia is withdrawing its troops. This is not what we are seeing,” said NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen as 28 alliance members convened in Brussels.

In Response

by: Tom Murphy from: Northern Virginia
April 03, 2014 9:41 PM
NATO has satellite images and other sources that can track Russian movements. Russia should be aware that NATO is like a dentist looking down their throats. When NATO issues numbers Russia's military can tell that the numbers are accurate, but they'll never admit it to the world.

by: dinhlan from: Hanoi
April 01, 2014 10:35 AM
US and Nato must help Ucraina to stop off Russian troops at boder Ucraina - Russia.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Muslims Long Thrived in N Carolina Before Slaying of 3 Studentsi
X
Jerome Socolovsky
March 05, 2015 9:04 PM
The killings of three Muslim students in North Carolina early last month came as Muslims across the United States have felt under siege, partly as a result of terrorist attacks being committed internationally in the name of their faith. But Muslims have long thrived in university cities in this part of the American South. VOA's Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Muslims Long Thrived in N Carolina Before Slaying of 3 Students

The killings of three Muslim students in North Carolina early last month came as Muslims across the United States have felt under siege, partly as a result of terrorist attacks being committed internationally in the name of their faith. But Muslims have long thrived in university cities in this part of the American South. VOA's Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Fuel Shortages in Nigeria Threaten Election Campaigns

Nigeria is suffering a gas shortage as the falling oil price has affected the country’s ability to import and distribute refined fuels. Coming just weeks before scheduled March 28 elections, the shortage could have a big impact on the campaign, as Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA.
Video

Video Report: Human Rights in Annexed Crimea Deteriorating

A new report by Freedom House and the Atlantic Council of the United States says the human rights situation in Crimea has deteriorated since the peninsula was annexed by Russia in March of last year. The report says the new authorities in Crimea are discriminating against minorities, suppressing freedom of expression, and forcing residents to assume Russian citizenship or leave. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video 50 Years Later African-Americans See New Voting Rights Battles Ahead

Thousands of people will gather to mark the 50th anniversary of a historic civil rights march on March 7th in Selma, Alabama. In 1965, dozens of people were seriously injured during the event known as “Bloody Sunday,” after police attacked African-American demonstrators demanding voting rights. VOA’s Chris Simkins introduces us to some civil rights pioneers who are still fighting for voting rights in Alabama more than 50 years later.
Video

Video Craft Brewers Taking Hold in US Beer Market

Since the 1950’s, the U.S. beer industry has been dominated by a handful of huge breweries. But in recent years, the rapid rise of small craft breweries has changed the American market and, arguably, the way people drink beer. VOA’s Jeff Custer reports.
Video

Video Video Claims to Show Shia Forces in Iraq Executing Sunni Boy

A graphic mobile phone video is spreading on the Internet, claiming to show Iraqi forces or Shia militia executing a handcuffed Sunni boy. Experts have yet to verify the video, but already Islamic State followers are publicizing it across social media, playing on deep-rooted sectarian fears. VOA’s Jeff Seldin reports.
Video

Video Ukrainian Authorities Struggle to Secure a Divided Mariupol

Since last month's cease-fire went into effect, shelling around the port city of Mariupol has decreased, but it is thought pro-Russian separatists remain poised to attack. For the city’s authorities, a major challenge is gaining the trust of residents, while at the same time rooting out informants who are passing sensitive information to the rebels. Patrick Wells reports for VOA.
Video

Video Volunteer Gauge-Watchers Help Fine-Tune Weather Science

An observation system called CoCoRaHS is working to improve weather science, thanks to thousands of volunteers across the country who measure precipitation in their own backyards, then share their data through the Internet. VOA's Shelley Schlender reports.
Video

Video NASA Spacecraft Approaches a Dwarf Planet

NASA’s Dawn spacecraft will make history on Friday, March 6, when it becomes the first man-made object to orbit a dwarf planet named Ceres. It is located in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter, almost 500 million kilometers from Earth. Among other objectives, Dawn will try to examine two mysterious bright white spots detected on the planet’s surface. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Young Muslims Radicalized Online

Young Muslims are being radicalized ‘in their bedrooms’ through direct contact with Islamic State or ISIL fighters via the Internet, according to terror experts. There are growing concerns that authorities and Internet providers are not doing enough to counter online extremism - which analysts say is spread by a prolific network of online supporters around the world. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Positive Messaging Transforms Ethiopia's Image

Ethiopia was once known for famine and droughts. Now, headlines more often point to its fast-growing economy and its emergence as a regional peacemaker. How has Addis Ababa changed the narrative? VOA's Marthe van der Wolf reports.
Video

Video Answers Elude Families of MH370 Passengers

For the families on board Malaysia Airlines flight MH370, an airline official’s statement nearly one year ago that the plane had lost contact with air traffic control at 2:40 AM is the only thing that remains confirmed. William Ide reports.

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More