News / Europe

Obama Europe Visit to be Dominated by Ukraine

Obama Europe Visit to be Dominated by Ukrainei
X
Luis Ramirez
May 30, 2014 12:01 AM
President Obama heads to Europe next week on a visit that will focus on Russian actions in Ukraine. VOA White House Correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Luis Ramirez
President Obama heads to Europe next week on a visit that will focus on Russian actions in Ukraine.  
 
First stop for the president is Poland, which wants more U.S. reassurances beyond those brought by a small contingent of American troops who deployed there in April.

President Obama has compared Russia's actions in Ukraine to the Cold War, when Soviet tanks rolled into eastern Europe. Today, he said, U.S. leadership is key.

“Our ability to shape world opinion helped isolate Russia right away. Because of American leadership, the world immediately condemned Russian actions. Europe and the G7 joined us to impose sanctions. NATO reinforced our commitment to Eastern European allies," said President Obama.

But the size of that commitment is the issue. Poland last month welcomed 150 U.S. troops - far below the 10,000 requested by Poland's defense minister.

"It is of concern what we can see happening in the east of Ukraine: a situation where, in the name of the protection of non-threatened interests of the rights of the minority, a brutal intervention is taking place. And it is true that we are concerned by that and we really count on the activity of the United States and the whole international community," said Poland's Defense Minister Tomasz Siemoniak.

History plays a big role in how Poland views Ukraine, says Christopher Hill, a former U.S. Ambassador to Poland, who spoke to VOA via Skype.

“Poles have understood, and they often say, that Russia without Ukraine is just Russia, but Russia with Ukraine is back to being the Soviet Union. So, the Poles have a real interest in Ukraine's success and viability," said Hill.

At one point during the trip, Obama is to meet with Ukraine's president-elect.

President Obama will go to Brussels for a G-7 summit of leaders from industrialized democracies, to be held in place of the G-8 meeting that was scheduled in the Russian resort of Sochi before Russia was expelled for its actions in Ukraine.

Final stop is Normandy, where the U.S. leader will commemorate the 70th anniversary of D-Day and the start of the allies' liberation of Europe from Nazi occupation.  Russian President Vladimir Putin will also be there, but no meeting is scheduled between the two men.

You May Like

Bleak China Economic Outlook Rattles Markets

Several key European stock indexes were down nearly three percent, while US market indexes were off around two percent in early trading More

DRC Tries Mega-Farms to Feed Population

Park at Boukanga Lonzo currently has 5,000 hectares under cultivation, crops stretching as far as eye can see, and is start of ambitious large-scale agriculture plan More

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Areas are spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, source of livelihood for fishermen and herders who have called the marshes home for generations More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Donald Fraser Miles from: Elliot Lake, Canada
May 30, 2014 5:03 PM
Ukraine has a unique position for Russia. It would not easily join NATO without Russian military response. The rest of Eastern Europe is different. Russia and NATO are like two dogs growling at each other because of the mixed/ dual nature of Ukraine as important to Russia but also with European relationships. Dogs fight with each over territory and food. Where there is equal claim or power over food or territory the dogs, or power blocs, will face off against each other. Putin seeks to re-establish the territorial limits of the old regime in Russia, that of Soviet Russia. NATO now has a claim to that territory. Where there will be conflict hard to control with Russia is where either NATO is clearly wandering into Russian territorial/ power zones or where NATO fails to show itself intent or committed to protecting its own power zone. Today the world is fighting on the growling dog level in Europe and the Asian Pacific zones. To protect against more severe conflict it is necessary to be firm in defence of one's own zone but not provoke a military response by ignoring the power zone of others. The consequences of going from growling to biting encounters are extreme. It is necessary to growl back when growled at provided you don't violate territorial zoning.

by: Vovan from: Central Ukraine
May 30, 2014 7:49 AM
Ukraine without help and support of the West is just potential victim of Russia, but Ukraine with help and support of the West is back to being in course of time one of competent countries of western civilization. So, the Ukraine have a real interest in Russia's destruction and crash as an empire of evil, said approximately 80% of Ukrainians.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOAi
X
August 31, 2015 2:17 AM
Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOA

Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Iraq's southern wetlands are in crisis. These areas are the spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, and source of livelihood for fishermen and herders. Faith Lapidus has more.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Rebuilding New Orleans' Music Scene

Ten years after Hurricane Katrina inundated New Orleans, threatening to wash away its vibrant musical heritage along with its neighborhoods, the beat goes on. As Bronwyn Benito and Faith Lapidus report, a Musicians' Village is preserving the city's unique sound.
Video

Video In Russia, Auto Industry in Tailspin

Industry insiders say country relies too heavily on imports as inflation cuts too many consumers out of the market. Daniel Schearf has more from Moscow.
Video

Video Scientist Calls Use of Fetal Tissue in Medical Research Essential

An anti-abortion group responsible for secret recordings of workers at a women's health care organization claims the workers shown are offering baby parts for sale, a charge the organization strongly denies. While the selling of fetal tissue is against the law in the United States, abortion and the use of donated fetal tissue for medical research are both legal. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.

VOA Blogs