News / Europe

Ukraine Separatists: Ready for Cease-Fire

Local residents display fragment of a shell after overnight shelling in Donetsk, eastern Ukraine, Friday, Aug. 8, 2014.
Local residents display fragment of a shell after overnight shelling in Donetsk, eastern Ukraine, Friday, Aug. 8, 2014.
VOA News

Pro-Russian separatists in Ukraine say they are ready for a cease-fire with the government amid gains by Ukrainian forces against the rebels.

Kyiv has not yet responded to the rebel offer. But the government has said it could agree to a cease-fire if the separatists give up their weapons.

The Ukrainian military is continuing to squeeze separatist forces in their remaining strongholds of Donetsk and Luhansk.

Conditions in Donetsk have been deteriorating, raising concerns of a humanitarian crisis in the city. A senior Ukrainian government official says Russian forces had wanted to enter Ukraine under the guise of a humanitarian mission, but Ukraine blocked the move.  Russian officials deny this.

Also Saturday, U.S. Vice President Joe Biden discussed the situation in eastern Ukraine with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko by telephone. A White House statement said the two stressed that any Russian action, even for "purported humanitarian purposes" would violate international law and be unacceptable without the consent and authorization of Kyiv.

According to the statement, Poroshenko added that he is in contact with the Red Cross about the distribution of humanitarian aid, including assistance from the United States, to eastern Ukraine.

The White House said the two men also agreed that if Russia wants to improve the humanitarian situation in eastern Ukraine, it must stop shelling Ukrainian troops, release Ukrainian hostages being held in Russia and stop supporting pro-Russian separatists.

A U.S. State Department official says Secretary of State John Kerry spoke by telephone Saturday with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.

The official says Kerry made it clear that the best way to get humanitarian aid into Ukraine is through international organizations that are already on the ground. Kerry told Lavrov that Russia should not intervene in Ukraine under the pretext of peacekeeping or humanitarian convoys. 

The White House says President Barack Obama and German Chancellor Angela Merkel agreed by phone Saturday that any Russian intervention in Ukraine without Kyiv's consent would violate international law and bring additional consequences.

The U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, Samantha Power, told a Security Council meeting on Ukraine Friday that while Russia has proposed creating humanitarian corridors to send aid to civilians in the war-torn region, such aid should be delivered by international organizations.

Both U.S. and NATO officials said Moscow had recently increased the number of its troops along the Ukrainian border to around 20,000.

Power also said Friday that Russian cross-border military assistance to separatists in eastern Ukraine has increased substantially in recent weeks, and that new separatist fighters are being trained on Russian soil.

You May Like

800-Pound Man Determined to Slim Down

Man says he was kicked out of hospital for ordering pizza; wants to be an actor More

Australia Prepares to Resettle 12,000 Syrian Refugees

Preference will be given to refugees from persecuted minorities, and the first group is expected to arrive before late December More

S. African Miners Seek Class Action Suit Against Gold Mines

The estimated 100,000 say say they contracted the lung diseases silicosis and tuberculosis in the mines More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
by: Tuan from: VN
August 12, 2014 2:44 AM
It's all Russian motive rebel. If people does not like its government, work on it but not with guns.
No Russian, No West. Ukraine would be in peace by now.

by: meanbill from: USA
August 10, 2014 9:20 AM
THE WISE MAN said it;.... The Ukraine government and the pro-Russian separatists are pawns in a political propaganda war between the US, EU, and NATO countries and Russia..... It's a political tug of war, with the US and Europeans having the most to lose, because Russia has never ever revealed their intentions on what they'll do, (except taking Crimea), and all the speculation and propaganda is coming from the US and Europeans, who desperately seek some kind of propaganda victory that they can boast on, without anybody giving a crap about the final solution of Ukraine, and it's people?...... You can defeat them in war, but can you rule them if they still resist?..... (it's a hollow victory, if you can't get the defeated people to accept your rule, isn't it?)..... "The Art of War" by Sun Tzu?

by: Q from: Mordor
August 10, 2014 2:21 AM
The threats of Russian invasion remain in high level.

by: Zer from: Germany
August 10, 2014 1:36 AM
Russia is out of control! EU must reduce consumption of Russia 's gas dramatically!

by: meanbill from: USA
August 09, 2014 11:34 PM
Genghis Khan "quote" said it;.... "You can conquer a people from the back of a horse, (but), you can't rule the people from the back of a horse."..... You can win all the battles and win the war in tanks, (but), if you can't rule the people who's army you defeated in tanks, what will you do then?...... fight another war?

by: george from: melbourne
August 09, 2014 6:51 PM
On the condition any rebel or separatist does not recognise the Ukrainian government as official should return or migrate to Russia.
In Response

by: : from: :
August 10, 2014 9:18 AM
And if you have in the country will come to power, the people with the policy which you can not agree. For example, they will tell you to talk only, say, on ukainskom language.
You agree deported, say, Africa?

by: Sunny Enwerem from: Lagos Nigeria
August 09, 2014 5:40 PM
Now which card does Putin intend to pull? Good will always conquer bad finally .

by: Ed from: Idaho
August 09, 2014 5:01 PM
Now that the separatists are losing they want a cease fire! Ukraine either needs to take Donetsk or bargain with the separatists and their Soviet masters for a permanent peace...maybe giving up a little bit of land for genuine peace. Unfortunately trusting and bargaining with Putin is like juggling with Jello!
In Response

by: rom from: Donetsk, Ukraine
August 11, 2014 7:48 AM
the separatists are really gang of killers. They are killing us by shelling at resident blocks in order to make others think that ukrainian troops are doing it. pro-rassian terrorists have being robing, raping and then killing young women and girls since they come here.
In Response

by: LO777
August 10, 2014 12:36 PM
You are wrong. The separatists want a cease fire to allow civilians to leave the city. This information is posted on their web site.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Amnesty Accuses Saudi Coalition of ‘War Crimes’ in Yemeni
Henry Ridgwell
October 12, 2015 4:03 PM
The human rights group Amnesty International has accused the Saudi-led coalition of war crimes in airstrikes against Houthi rebels in Yemen. Henry Ridgwell reports the group says hundreds of civilians have been killed in strikes on residential areas.

Video Amnesty Accuses Saudi Coalition of ‘War Crimes’ in Yemen

The human rights group Amnesty International has accused the Saudi-led coalition of war crimes in airstrikes against Houthi rebels in Yemen. Henry Ridgwell reports the group says hundreds of civilians have been killed in strikes on residential areas.

Video No Resolution in Sight to US House Speaker Drama

Uncertainty grips the U.S. Congress, where no consensus replacement has emerged to succeed Republican House Speaker John Boehner after his surprise resignation announcement. Half of Congress is effectively leaderless weeks before America risks defaulting on its national debt and enduring another partial government shutdown.

Video New Art Exhibit Focuses on Hope

Out of struggle and despair often comes hope. That idea is behind a new art exhibit at the American Visionary Art Museum in Baltimore, Maryland. "The Big Hope Show" features 25 artists, some of whom overcame trauma and loss. VOA’s Deborah Block reports.

Video Columbus Day Still Generates Controversy as US Holiday

The second Monday of October is Columbus Day in the United States, honoring explorer Christopher Columbus and his discovery of the Americas. The achievement is a source of pride for many, but for some the holiday is marked by controversy. Adrianna Zhang has more.

Video Anger Simmers as Turks Begin to Bury Blast Victims

The Turkish army carried out new air strikes on Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) targets on Sunday, a day after the banned group announced a unilateral cease fire. The air raids apparently are in retaliation for the Saturday bombing in Turkey's capital Ankara that killed at least 95 people and wounded more than 200 others. But as Zlatica Hoke reports, there are suspicions that Islamic State is involved.

Video Bombings a Sign of Turkey’s Deep Troubles

Turkey has begun a three-day period of mourning following Saturday’s bomb attacks in the capital, Ankara, that killed nearly 100 people. With contentious parliamentary elections three weeks away, the attacks highlight the challenges Turkey is facing as it struggles with ethnic friction, an ongoing migrant crisis, and growing tensions with Russia. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.

Video Afghanistan’s Progress Aided by US Academic Center

Recent combat in Afghanistan has shifted world attention back to the central Asian nation’s continuing civil war and economic challenges. But, while there are many vexing problems facing Afghanistan’s government and people, a group of academics in Omaha, Nebraska has kept a strong faith in the nation’s future through programs to improve education. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from Omaha, Nebraska.

Video House Republicans in Chaos as Speaker Favorite Withdraws

The Republican widely expected to become the next speaker of the House of Representatives shocked his colleagues Thursday by announcing he was withdrawing his candidacy. The decision by Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy means the race to succeed retiring Speaker John Boehner is now wide open. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone reports.

Video German, US Officials Investigate Volkswagen

German officials have taken steps to restore some of the reputation their car industry has lost after a recent Volkswagen diesel emissions scandal. Authorities have searched Volkswagen headquarters and other locations in an effort to identify the culprits in the creation of software that helps cheat on emission tests. Meanwhile, a group of lawmakers in Washington held a hearing to get to the bottom of the cheating strategy that was first discovered in the United States. Zlatica Hoke reports.

Video Why Are Gun Laws So Hard for Congress to Tackle?

Since taking office, President Barack Obama has spoken out or issued statements about 15 mass shootings. The most recent shooting, in which 10 people were killed at a community college, sparked outrage over the nation's gun laws. But changing those laws isn't as easy as many think. VOA's Carolyn Presutti reports.

Video In 'He Named Me Malala,' Guggenheim Finds Normal in Extraordinary

Davis Guggenheim’s documentary "He Named Me Malala" offers a probing look into the life of 18-year-old Malala Yousafsai, the Pakistani teenager who, in 2012, was shot in the head by the Taliban for standing up for her right to education in her hometown in Pakistan's Swat Valley. Guggenheim shows how, since then, Malala has become a symbol not as a victim of brutal violence, but as an advocate for girls’ education throughout the world. VOA’s Penelope Poulou has more.

Video Paintable Solar Cells May Someday Replace Silicon-Based Panels

Solar panels today are still factory-manufactured, with the use of some highly toxic substances such as cadmium chloride. But a researcher at St. Mary’s College, Maryland, says we are close to being able to create solar panels by painting them on a suitable surface, using nontoxic solutions. VOA’s George Putic reports.

VOA Blogs