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

    Turkey, US Splits Deepen Over Support for Kurdish Militants

    Ankara summons American ambassador to protest remarks by State Department spokesman who said Washington does not consider Syria's Kurdish Democracy Union Party (PYD) a terrorist organization

    Obama Seeking $19 Billion for National Cybersecurity

    Move, touted as attempt to build broad, cohesive federal response to cyberthreats, calls for increase in cybersecurity spending across all government agencies

    Video Foreign Policy Weighs Heavy for Some US Voters

    VOA talks to protesters in Manchester, New Hampshire, who sound off on foreign policy issues such as the Guantanamo Bay prison, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and the wars in Iraq, Syria and Yemen

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    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.
    Valentine's Day Stinks for Lebanese Clownsi
    X
    February 09, 2016 8:04 PM
    This weekend, on Valentine's Day in Lebanon, love is not the only thing in the air. More than half a year after the country's trash crisis began, the stink of uncollected garbage remains on the streets. Step forward "Clown Me In," a group of clowns who use their skills for activism. Before the most romantic day of the year the clowns have released their unusual take on love in Lebanon -- in a bid to keep the pressure up and get the trash off the streets. John Owens reports from Beirut.
    Video

    Video Valentine's Day Stinks for Lebanese Clowns

    This weekend, on Valentine's Day in Lebanon, love is not the only thing in the air. More than half a year after the country's trash crisis began, the stink of uncollected garbage remains on the streets. Step forward "Clown Me In," a group of clowns who use their skills for activism. Before the most romantic day of the year the clowns have released their unusual take on love in Lebanon -- in a bid to keep the pressure up and get the trash off the streets. John Owens reports from Beirut.
    Video

    Video Rocky Year Ahead for Nigeria Amid Oil Price Crash

    The global fall in the price of oil has rattled the economies of many petroleum exporters, and Africa’s oil king Nigeria is no exception. As Chris Stein reports from Lagos, analysts are predicting a rough year ahead for the continent’s top producer of crude.
    Video

    Video Foreign Policy Weighs Heavy for Some US Voters

    VOA talks to protesters in Manchester, New Hampshire who sound off on foreign policy issues such as the Guantanamo Bay Prison, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Middle East Affairs and national security.
    Video

    Video 'No Means No' Program Targets Sexual Violence in Kenya

    The organizers of an initiative to reduce and stop rape in the informal settlements around Kenya's capital say their program is having marked success. Girls are taking self-defense classes while the boys are learning how to protect the girls and respect them. Lenny Ruvaga reports from Nairobi.
    Video

    Video New Hampshire Voters Are Independent, Mindful of History

    Once every four years, the northeastern state of New Hampshire becomes the center of the U.S. political universe with its first-in-the-nation presidential primary. What's unusual about New Hampshire is how seriously the voters take their role and the responsibility of being among the first to weigh in on the candidates.
    Video

    Video Chocolate Lovers Get a Sweet History Lesson

    Observed in many countries around the world, Valentine’s Day is sometimes celebrated with chocolate festivals. But at a festival near Washington, the visitors experience a bit more than a sugar rush. They go on a sweet journey through history. VOA’s June Soh takes us to the festival.
    Video

    Video 'Smart' Bandages Could Heal Wounds More Quickly

    Simple bandages are usually seen as the first line of attack in healing small to moderate wounds and burns. But scientists say new synthetic materials with embedded microsensors could turn bandages into a much more valuable tool for emergency physicians. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Bhutanese Refugees in New Hampshire Closely Watching Primary Election

    They fled their country and lived in refugee camps in neighboring Nepal for decades before being resettled in the northeastern U.S. state of New Hampshire -- now the focus of the U.S. presidential contest. VOA correspondent Aru Pande spoke with members of the Bhutanese community, including new American citizens, about the campaign and the strong anti-immigrant rhetoric of some of the candidates.
    Video

    Video Researchers Use 3-D Printer to Produce Transplantable Body Parts

    Human organ transplants have become fairly common around the world in the past few decades. Researchers at various universities are coordinating their efforts to find solutions -- including teams at the University of Pennsylvania and Rice University in Houston that are experimenting with a 3-D printer -- to make blood vessels and other structures for implant. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Houston, they are also using these artificial body parts to seek ways of defeating cancerous tumors.
    Video

    Video Helping the Blind 'See' Great Art

    There are 285 million blind and visually impaired people in the world who are unable to enjoy visual art at a museum. One New York photographer is trying to fix this situation by making tangible copies of the world’s masterpieces. VOA correspondent Victoria Kupchinetsky was there as visually impaired people got a feel for great art. Joy Wagner narrates her report.
    Video

    Video German Artists to Memorialize Refugees With Life Jacket Exhibit

    Sold in every kind of shop in some Turkish port towns, life jackets have become a symbol of the refugee crisis that brought a million people to Europe in 2015.  On the shores of Lesbos, Greece, German artists collect discarded life jackets as they prepare an art installation they plan to display in Germany.  For VOA, Hamada Elrasam has this report from Lesbos, Greece.
    Video

    Video E-readers Help Ease Africa's Book Shortage

    Millions of people in Africa can't read, and there's a chronic shortage of books. A non-profit organization called Worldreader is trying to help change all that one e-reader at a time. VOA’s Deborah Block tells us about a girls' school in Nairobi, Kenya where Worldreader is making a difference.
    Video

    Video Genius Lets World Share Its Knowledge

    Inspired by crowdsourcing companies like Wikipedia, Genius allows anyone to edit anything on the web, using its web annotation tool
    Video

    Video In Philippines, Mixed Feelings About Greater US Military Presence

    In the Philippines, some who will be directly affected by a recent Supreme Court decision clearing the way for more United States troop visits are having mixed reactions.  The increased rotations come at a time when the Philippines is trying to build up its military in the face of growing maritime assertiveness from China.  From Bahile, Palawan on the coast of the South China Sea, Simone Orendain has this story.