News / Europe

Pro-Russia Rebels Kill 14 Ukraine Troops as Crucial Poll Nears

Ukrainian soldiers ride atop an Armored Personnel Carrier (APC) near the site where pro-Russia rebels killed Ukrainian servicemen in the outskirts of the eastern Ukrainian town of Volnovakha, south of Donetsk May 22, 2014.
Ukrainian soldiers ride atop an Armored Personnel Carrier (APC) near the site where pro-Russia rebels killed Ukrainian servicemen in the outskirts of the eastern Ukrainian town of Volnovakha, south of Donetsk May 22, 2014.
VOA News
Ukraine's acting president says 13 service members were killed when pro-Russian separatists attacked a military checkpoint in eastern Ukraine's Donetsk region.

President Oleksandr Turchnyov said Thursday the soldiers who died in the overnight attack near the town of Volnovakha "gave their lives for Ukraine."  

He said the separatists attacked the checkpoint using mortars, grenade launchers and heavy automatic weapons.

Officials in the Donetsk regional administration said 16 people died in the attack, but they did not specify whether all those killed were government soldiers. They said 32 people were injured.

Another government serviceman was killed overnight in the neighboring Luhansk region.

Reacting to the latest violence and other reported incidents on Ukraine’s border with Russia, Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk called for an emergency meeting of the U.N. Security Council.

“We will provide proof that it is the Russian side that bears responsibility for attempts to escalate the conflict… and to undermine presidential elections,” he said at a military installation outside Kyiv.

Russia accused Kyiv of stepping up military operations in eastern Ukraine and failing to implement measures to end the crisis.
Ukrainian businessman, politician and presidential candidate Petro Poroshenko (L) meets his supporters during his election rally in the city of Kryvyi Rih May 17, 2014.Ukrainian businessman, politician and presidential candidate Petro Poroshenko (L) meets his supporters during his election rally in the city of Kryvyi Rih May 17, 2014.
x
Ukrainian businessman, politician and presidential candidate Petro Poroshenko (L) meets his supporters during his election rally in the city of Kryvyi Rih May 17, 2014.
Ukrainian businessman, politician and presidential candidate Petro Poroshenko (L) meets his supporters during his election rally in the city of Kryvyi Rih May 17, 2014.


Confectionery magnate and former foreign minister Petro Poroshenko, 48, remains the clear front-runner in the presidential race, according to opinion polls. Some surveys suggest he could garner the more than 50 percent of votes needed to win the election in the first round.

Kyiv and Western countries hope the poll will help legitimize Ukraine’s new government following the ouster in February, after months of protests, of pro-Moscow president Viktor Yanukovych, and help stabilize the situation in the country.

The U.S. and the European Union say they will impose broader sanctions on Russia if it tries to derail the vote.

Russian troop movements
 
Also Thursday, NATO chief Anders Fogh Rasmussen said there was some Russian troop activity near the Ukrainian border that "may suggest some of these forces are preparing to withdraw."
 
Western countries have protested Russia's deployment of tens of thousands of troops to the area, expressing concern Russia may be preparing an invasion after annexing Crimea in March.
 
Russian officials have said multiple times in the past few weeks that the troops would pull back from the border.
 
Rasmussen said Thursday on Twitter that he hoped the troop movements were the start of a "full and genuine withdrawal," but also cautioned that most of the Russian forces remained near the border.
 


He called on Russia to meet its international commitments, particularly in view of Sunday’s elections in Ukraine.

NATO’s military chief, meanwhile, said that that despite the recent movements, Russian forces on Ukraine’s border remained “very large” and threatening.

“[It's] too early to know where they are moving to or how many of them are moving, but what we do know is the force that remains on the border is very large and very capable and it remains in a very coercive posture,"  U.S. Air Force General Philip Breedlove, NATO's Supreme Allied Commander in Europe, told a news conference.

Meanwhile, Russia's Defense Ministry said Thursday that 20 trains and 15 planes full of troops have been moved out of the border area with Ukraine.

Russia feeling economic pressure

In another sign of the effects of Western pressure on Russia over Ukraine, many foreign investors are snubbing Moscow by boycotting a high-profile economic summit underway in St. Petersburg.

Billed as Russia’s response to the annual forum in Davos, Switzerland, this year’s event is being shunned by many major Western companies, with some having sent only lower-level executives or none at all.

In an apparent damage control effort, the Kremlin reportedly sent a confidential email to loyal and state-run news organizations advising them to accentuate the growing participation of Asian investors and the quality of discussions at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum.

Speaking on the sidelines of the forum, a ranking Russian official admitted that “informal” Western pressure is having an effect.

“…the informal character of the pressure, which is being exerted by the United States and countries of the European Union, it is all causing serious consequences for our economy,” said First Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov, according to RIA news agency.

Prince Charles ‘Hitler’ comment fallout

Meanwhile, Russia blasted Britain’s Prince Charles Thursday for reportedly likening President Vladimir Putin to Nazi leader Adolf Hitler over Moscow’s actions in Ukraine.

“[For] members the of the British royal family to spread the propaganda campaign against Russia on a pressing issue - that is, the situation in Ukraine - as unacceptable, outrageous and low,'' Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich said at a news conference.

He added that Moscow was seeking an official explanation from Britain.

During a visit to Canada, in conversation with a Jewish woman who fled Poland during World War II, Prince Charles said that “Putin is doing just about the same as Hitler,” Britain’s Daily Mail newspaper reported.

Some informatino for this report provided by AFP and Reuters.
 

You May Like

Lesotho Faces New Round of Violence, Political Crisis

Brutal killing of military officer has sent former leaders back into S. Africa where they're watching anxiously as regional officials head in to try to restore peace More

Video VOA EXCLUSIVE: US Diplomat Expects Adoption of Bosnian Massacre Anniversary Resolution

Samantha Power says there's broad consensus about killings in Bosnia's war, but Russia calls resolution 'divisive,' backs UN countermeasure More

UN Report Exposes Widespread Boko Haram Atrocities

Damning report graphically details pattern of vicious, widespread atrocities committed by Islamist militants More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: billybob from: Craptown, usa
May 25, 2014 4:31 AM
"THEY GAVE THEIR LIVES for Ukraine". What a load of cap. They gave their lives to satanic bankers that Ukraine could be robbed blind.

by: Huang Jun from: China
May 23, 2014 12:07 AM
Bravo. Hey Eastern Ukainians, those western backed fascists must be dealt with without mercy. Chinese history has proved this.

by: Igor from: Russia
May 23, 2014 12:00 AM
Prince Charles's insolent statement about Mr. Putin is an acceptable, which shows humble nature of an uneducated guy.

by: paul hynes from: uk
May 22, 2014 12:15 PM
putin orchestrating the violence in ukraine supplying weapons to civilians and has his own special forces on the ground time for stronger action from the international community before there is civil war and the eventual break up of ukraine

by: Alex from: Russia
May 22, 2014 11:57 AM
correct title: "Pro-Kolomoysky terrorists Kill 14 infidel Ukraine Troops"

by: cannon fodder from: maine
May 22, 2014 10:32 AM
It's good to know that a bunch of untrained peasants have the ability and training to attack and kill so many trained soldiers in a defense position. Oh, and they had state of the art weapons they found in the street - what a lucky coincidence.
In Response

by: meanbill from: USA
May 22, 2014 1:18 PM
REMEMBER the few thousand guys riding donkeys, wearing nightshirts, gym shoes and sandals, that defeated the greatest military force in the history of the world in Afghanistan? -- REMEMBER Genghis Khan who couldn't read or write his own language, and was the greatest conquer of all time, that conquered more countries and peoples than anybody else -- (AND?) -- and he ruled over them, not knowing their languages nor his.. __ CRAZY isn't it?

by: meanbill from: USA
May 22, 2014 9:44 AM
RUSSIAN TROOPS? -- "Make yourself look like you are withdrawing when you are planning to attack, and act like you are going to attack when you are withdrawing" -- from the book, "The Art of War" by Sun Tzu...

The US and NATO haven't a clue, on what the Russian troops are planning to do? -- And after Russia took Crimea without losing a single man? --- You'd think the US and NATO would read "The Art of War" by Sun Tzu, (where it's written) "Know your enemy and know yourself, and you can win a hundred battles without losing a single man" ... (HELLO?)

by: Fsa from: Berlin
May 22, 2014 9:43 AM
Ukrainians want to be a part of EU and USA friend,but we betrayed them. For us,trading with Russia is more important than whole nation of Ukraine. Putin tries to destabilize not Ukraine only but the whole EU.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountaini
X
July 02, 2015 4:10 AM
Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Olympics Construction Scars Sacred Korean Mountain

Environmentalists in South Korea are protesting a Winter Olympics construction project to build a ski slope through a 500-year-old protected forest. Brian Padden reports that although there is strong national support for hosting the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, there are growing public concerns over the costs and possible ecological damage at the revered mountain.
Video

Video Xenophobia Victims in South Africa Flee Violence, Then Return

Many Malawians fled South Africa early this year after xenophobic attacks on African immigrants. But many quickly found life was no better at home and have returned to South Africa – often illegally and without jobs, and facing the tough task of having to start over. Lameck Masina and Anita Powell file from Johannesburg.
Video

Video Family of American Marine Calls for Release From Iranian Prison

As the crowd of journalists covering the Iran talks swells, so too do the opportunities for media coverage.  Hoping to catch the attention of high-level diplomats, the family of American-Iranian marine Amir Hekmati is in Vienna, pleading for his release from an Iranian prison after nearly 4 years.  VOA’s Heather Murdock reports from Vienna.
Video

Video UK Holds Terror Drill as MPs Mull Tunisia Response

After pledging a tough response to last Friday’s terror attack in Tunisia, which came just days before the 10th anniversary of the bomb attacks on London’s transport network, British security services are shifting their focus to overseas counter-terror operations. VOA's Henry Ridgwell has more.
Video

Video Obama on Cuba: This is What Change Looks Like

President Barack Obama says the United States will soon reopen its embassy in Cuba for the first time since 1961, ending a half-century of isolation. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video Hate Groups Spread Influence Via Internet

Hate groups of various kinds are using the Internet for propaganda and recruitment, and a Jewish human rights organization that monitors these groups, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, says their influence is growing. The messages are different, but the calls to hatred or violence are similar. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video US Silica Sand Mining Surge Worries Illinois Residents, Businesses

Increased domestic U.S. oil and gas production, thanks to advances known as “fracking,” has created a boom for other industries supporting that extraction. Demand for silica sand, used in fracking, could triple over the next five years. In the Midwest state of Illinois, people living near the mines are worried about how increased silica sand mining will affect their businesses and their health. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh has more in this first of a series of reports.
Video

Video Blind Somali Journalist Defies Odds in Mogadishu

Despite improving security in the last few years, Somalia remains one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist – even more so for someone who cannot see. Abdulaziz Billow has the story of journalist Abdifatah Hassan Kalgacal, who has been reporting from the Somali capital for the last decade despite being blind.
Video

Video Texas Defies Same-Sex Marriage Ruling

Texas state officials have criticized the US Supreme Court decision giving same-sex couples the right to marry nationwide. The attorney general of Texas says last week's decision did not overrule constitutional "rights of religious liberty," and therefore officials performing wedding services can refuse to perform them for same-sex couples if it is against their religious beliefs. Zlatica Hoke reports on the controversy.
Video

Video Rabbi Hits Road to Heal Jewish-Muslim Relations in France

France is on high alert after last week's terrorist attack near the city Lyon, just six months after deadly Paris shootings. The attack have added new tensions to relations between French Jews and Muslims. France’s Jewish and Muslim communities also share a common heritage, though, and as far as one French rabbi is concerned, they are destined to be friends. From the Paris suburb of La Courneuve, Lisa Bryant reports about Rabbi Michel Serfaty and his friendship bus.
Video

Video Saudi Leaks Expose ‘Checkbook Diplomacy’ In Battle With Iran

Saudi Arabia’s willingness to wield its oil money on the global diplomatic stage appears to have been laid bare, after the website WikiLeaks published tens of thousands of leaked cables from Riyadh’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video In Kenya, Police Said to Shoot First, Ask Questions Later

An organization that documents torture and extrajudicial killings says Kenyan police were responsible for 1,252 shooting deaths in five cities, including Nairobi, between 2009 and 2014, representing 67 percent of all gun deaths in the areas reviewed. Gabe Joselow has more from Nairobi.

VOA Blogs