News / Europe

NATO Chief: More Russian Troops at Ukraine's Border

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, right, addresses Ukraine Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin, left, as NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen listens at a NATO meeting in Brussels June 25, 2014.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, right, addresses Ukraine Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin, left, as NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen listens at a NATO meeting in Brussels June 25, 2014.
VOA News

The head of NATO says Russia has resumed a troop build-up along its border with Ukraine, as Ukraine's president announced that he will sign an association agreement with the European Union.

NATO Secretary-General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said in Brussels that "at least a few thousand more" Russian troops had been deployed in what he said was "a new Russian military build-up" around the Ukrainian border. He called it "a very regrettable step backwards."

He said the Russian troop deployment would be a "positive step" if it were aimed at sealing the border and preventing the flow of fighters and weapons to the separatists,

But this is not "what we're seeing," said Rasmussen.

Major deployment

Up to 40,000 Russian troops were deployed near the border with Ukraine, but NATO reported last month that they had been withdrawn from the area.

Ukraine's President Petro Poroshenko said he will sign an association agreement with the European Union on June 27. The refusal by Ukraine's former pro-Russian president, Viktor Yanukovych, to sign the EU association agreement last November triggered the unrest that led to his ouster earlier this year.

Poroshenko also said that he will present a peace plan for eastern Ukraine on Friday. As part of that plan, he has proposed instituting a unilateral cease-fire to give rebels the chance to disarm or leave the country.

Poroshenko outlined the plan in a telephone conversation with Russian President Vladimir Putin Thursday, highlighting the need for hostages to be freed and an effective control established on the joint border.

Separatist officials already have rejected the offer, and heavy fighting between government and separatist forces was reported Thursday in eastern Ukraine.

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden said the United States will work with its partners to impose "further costs on Russia" if it does not use its influence to help halt the separatist violence in eastern Ukraine.

Biden communication

The White House said Biden spoke with Poroshenko by telephone Wednesday, and the two promised to "stay in touch" before a meeting of European Union leaders next week.

The United States and European Union imposed sanctions against a group of Russian individuals and companies after Russia annexed Ukraine's Crimean Peninsula in March.

The United Nations says the pro-Russian separatists's rebellion in eastern Ukraine has involved killings, torture and abductions to instill a "climate of fear."

U.N. Human Rights official Gianni Magazzeni said the situation has created challenges for those caught up in the fighting.

"This has to so with access to public services whether it is schools, medical services, whether it is food, whether it is electricity, water," said Magazzeni. "But it is also a question of a total breakdown in law and order, the inability to get protection when it comes to ill treatment, detention, abductions and possible also torture and executions that are, and we are reporting, are taking place in this pocket areas in the East in the course of the past month."

U.N. human rights chief Navi Pillay urged armed separatists to stop actions she says are leading to misery and destruction in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions. She said "the time has come to put down the guns and talk."

OSCE monitors in contact

According to news reports by Reuters, a spokesperson for the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, a security-oriented intergovernmental human rights and arms control agency, says it has reestablished communication with two teams of international monitors deployed in Eastern Ukraine.

"We know that the first ones, the ones that were taken longer ago are alive and unharmed," the spokesman told the news agency.

 

  • Pro-Russian troops prepare to travel in a tank on a road near the town of Yanakiyevo, Donetsk region, eastern Ukraine, June 20, 2014.
  • People carry their belongings as they walk to cross the border into Russia at the Ukrainian-Russian border checkpoint in Izvaryne, eastern Ukraine, June 20, 2014.
  • A man examines a destroyed building after fighting between Ukrainian and pro-Russian fighters in the city of Artyomovsk, Donetsk region, eastern Ukraine, June 20, 2014.
  • Pro-Russian fighters wave a white flag to start a handover of the bodies of Ukrainian troops killed in a plane shot down near Luhansk, at a check point in the village of Karlivka near Donetsk, eastern Ukraine, June 18, 2014.
  • Pro-Russian fighters wait for representatives of the Ukrainian troops at a checkpoint in the village of Karlivka for the handover of the bodies of Ukrainian troops who died in a plane shot down near Luhansk, Ukraine, June 18, 2014.
  • Pro-Russian separatists stand guard at a check-point as a car drives past outside Luhansk, Ukraine, June 18, 2014.
  • Miners, one of them carrying a sign with the name of the mine Trudovskaya, march in support of peace in Donetsk, eastern Ukraine, June 18, 2014.
  • Residents collect water at a pumping station in the eastern Ukranian city of Slovyansk, June 17, 2014.
  • A woman walks past portraits of protesters who were killed in clashes with police in February in Independence Square in Kyiv, June 18, 2014.
  • People take part in a rally to press demands for parliament to be dissolved and early elections outside the assembly in Kyiv, June 17, 2014.
  • Pro-Russian fighters walk past remnants of a downed Ukrainian army aircraft Il-76 at the airport near Luhansk, Ukraine, June 14, 2014.

You May Like

Australia Knights Prince Philip, Sparking National Outrage

Abbott's surprise reintroduction of knights and dames in the country's honors system last year drew criticism that he was out of touch with national sentiment More

SAG Award Boosts 'Birdman' Oscar Hopes

Individual acting Oscars appear to be sewn up: SAG awards went to artists who won Golden Globes: Julianne Moore, Eddie Redmayne, Patricia Arquette, J.K. Simmons More

Katy Perry Lights Way for Super Bowl's Girl Power Moment

Pop star's selection to headline US football championship's halftime show extends NFL's trend of selecting artists who appeal to younger viewers More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: James McQuaid from: Michigan, U.S.A.
June 19, 2014 9:14 PM
One of the Donetsk People’s Republic separatists dies and goes to Heaven, where he meets St. Peter at the pearly gates. While being shown around Heaven the separatist comes across a room full of clocks that are all ticking away. Each clock has the name of a Russian leader on it, Medvedev, Lavrov, Rogozin, etc. The separatist inquires what this means. St. Peter responds, “Oh, we use these ultra-accurate clocks to track the lies of the Russian leadership. Every time a lie is told, the seconds hand moves.” The separatist then asks, “Where is the Putin clock?” To which St Peter responds, “Ah yes, the angels are using it as a ceiling fan in another room.”


by: meanbill from: USA
June 19, 2014 7:44 PM
MY OPINION? -- Since the US, EU, and NATO countries won't step in this Ukraine crisis, like they did in Yugoslavia (for humanitarian reasons) to save the thousands of innocent civilians from being killed -- (THEN?) -- Russia has no other choice, but to intervene (for humanitarian reasons), to save the innocent civilians that the Kiev government is starving and killing... in a holocaust of Russian speaking people?


by: meanbill from: USA
June 19, 2014 5:46 PM
TRUTH BE TOLD -- The US, EU, and NATO countries accuse the Russians of not sealing their 1,426 mile border with Ukraine, allowing re-enforcements for the embattled pro-Russian separatists -- (FACTUAL FACTS?) -- The US (with the greatest surveillance equipment and killer drones in the world), has a 1,951 mile border with Mexico, and thousands of illegal South Americans cross into the US every week. -- (HYPOCRITICAL?) -- Thousands of illegals enter Europe and the US every week, -- and now the US, EU, and NATO countries expect the Russians to do what they can't? .... REALLY?


by: Sunny Enwerem from: Abeokuta Nigeria
June 19, 2014 3:34 PM
Sooner or later NATO will realize that Russia's treat is not to Ukraine but to its own existence as a force that can't stand up to Russia if they want the continues flow for oil ,Russia is the bully with balls because they got oil EU nations can't survive without.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Zoo Animals Show Their Artistic Sidesi
X
June Soh
January 23, 2015 10:03 PM
The pursuit of happiness is so important, America's founding fathers put it in the Declaration of Independence. Any zookeeper will tell you animals need enrichment, just like humans do. So painting, and even music, are part of the Smithsonian National Zoo's program to keep the animals happy. VOA’s June Soh met some animal artists at the zoo in Washington. Faith Lapidus narrates.
Video

Video Zoo Animals Show Their Artistic Sides

The pursuit of happiness is so important, America's founding fathers put it in the Declaration of Independence. Any zookeeper will tell you animals need enrichment, just like humans do. So painting, and even music, are part of the Smithsonian National Zoo's program to keep the animals happy. VOA’s June Soh met some animal artists at the zoo in Washington. Faith Lapidus narrates.
Video

Video Progress, Some Areas of Disagreement in Cuba Talks

U.S. and Cuban officials are reporting progress from initial talks in Havana on re-establishing diplomatic ties. U.S. Assistant Secretary of State (for Western Hemisphere Affairs) Roberta Jacobson said while there was agreement on a broad range of issues, there also are some “profound disagreements” between Washington and Havana. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins has the story.
Video

Video Worldwide Photo Workshops Empower Youth

Last September, 20 young adults from South Sudan took part in a National Geographic Photo Camp. They are among hundreds of students from around the world who have learned how to use a camera to tell the stories of the people in their communities through the powerful medium of photography. Three camp participants talked about their experiences recently on a visit to Washington. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video US, Japan Offer Lessons as Eurozone Launches Huge Stimulus

The Euro currency has fallen sharply after the European Central Bank announced a bigger-than-expected $67 billion-a-month quantitative easing program Thursday - commonly seen as a form of printing new money. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London on whether the move might rescue the eurozone economy -- and what lessons have been learned from similar programs around the world.
Video

Video Nigerian Elections Pose Concern of Potential Conflict in 'Middle Belt'

Nigeria’s north-central state of Kaduna has long been the site of fighting between Muslims and Christians as well as between people of different ethnic groups. As the February elections approach, community and religious leaders are making plans they hope will keep the streets calm after results are announced. Chris Stein reports from the state capital, Kaduna.
Video

Video As Viewership Drops, Obama Puts His Message on YouTube

Ratings reports show President Obama’s State of the Union address this week drew the lowest number of viewers for this annual speech in 15 years. White House officials anticipated this, and the president has decided to take a non-traditional approach to getting his message out. VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports.
Video

Video S. Korean Businesses Want to End Trade Restrictions With North

Business leaders in South Korea are calling for President Park Geun-hye to ease trade restrictions with North Korea that were put in place in 2010 after the sinking of a South Korean warship.Pro-business groups argue that expanding trade and investment is not only good for business, it is also good for long-term regional peace and security. VOA’s Brian Padden reports.
Video

Video US Marching Bands Grow Into a Show of Their Own

The 2014 Super Bowl halftime show was the most-watched in history - attracting an estimated 115 million viewers. That event featured pop star Bruno Mars. But the halftime show tradition started with marching bands, which still dominate the entertainment at U.S. high school and college American football games. But as Enming Liu reports in this story narrated by Adrianna Zhang, marching bands have grown into a show of their own.

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

All About America

AppleAndroid