News / Europe

Russia Arms Ukraine Secessionists, Again

Russia Arms Ukraine Secessionists, Againi
X
James Brooke
June 18, 2014 10:54 PM
When Crimea broke away from Ukraine, after the uprising in Kyiv that ousted president Viktor Yanukovych, Russia denied sending soldiers and weapons to boost the secessionist forces. Now, as James Brooke reports for VOA from Moscow, the Kremlin is trying the same tactic in the Russian-leaning areas of southeastern Ukraine.
James Brooke
When Crimea broke away from Ukraine, after the uprising in Kyiv that ousted President Viktor Yanukovych, Russia denied sending soldiers and weapons to boost the secessionist forces. Now the Kremlin is trying the same tactic in the Russian-leaning areas of southeastern Ukraine.
 
Video of Ukraine rebels jump-starting an old tank atop a World War II monument seemed to symbolize to the world their shortage of weapons.
 
On June 4, President Vladimir Putin told a French interviewer that American officials were lying when they accused Russia of sending men and materiel to Ukraine’s secessionists.
 
“There are no armed forces, no Russian ‘instructors’ in southeastern Ukraine," he said. "And there never were any.”
 
He then challenged Washington to show proof.
 
Despite his disavowal, videos surfaced on YouTube last week of three modern T-64 tanks - clanking through the streets of rebel-controlled Donetsk.
 
Then, NATO released satellite photos indicating that the tanks came from southern Russia as part of a larger weapons convoy that included rocket launchers.
 
Pavel Felgenhauer, a Moscow military analyst, says the Kremlin sent the tanks to pick up the spirits of rebels squeezed by a Ukrainian Army offensive.
 
“These tanks would be, a powerful morale booster. So they were paraded, most likely, not for Western consumption but for local consumption,” said Felgenhauer.
 
Rebel fighters are increasingly surrounded by Ukrainian army troops, and this week, rebel militia leader Igor Strelkov urgently appealed to Moscow for more Russian arms. Other rebel leaders went to Moscow and appealed in person.
 
In Moscow, Sergei Markov, an influential nationalist thinker, warned that Moscow needs Ukraine’s Donbass region as a safety buffer between Russia and the West.

"Russia can't give up the Donbass," he said, "because the next blow will be against Russia."
 
Markov warned of security consequences if Russia allowed a pro-West government to survive in Kyiv.  He predicted that in 2017, “a NATO-Ukrainian army will invade Russia through Crimea."
 
Ukraine’s new president, Petro Poroshenko, is proposing a unilateral cease-fire.  But first, his soldiers are trying to shut off Russian arms shipments by closing Ukraine’s 2,000-kilometer land border with Russia.
 
On the other side of the border, however, Russia is rebuilding its military strength.  Felgenhauer says the goal is to give Russia the option of a cross-border offensive in July or August.
 
“If there is a threat the rebellion will collapse, Russia may move in, in force,” said Felgenhauer.
 
Meanwhile, on Tuesday, the day after Russia stopped selling gas to Ukraine, there was an explosion on a buried pipeline that exports gas to Europe.  Ukrainian authorities say the blast might have been an act of terrorism aimed at undermining Ukraine's reputation as a reliable conduit for energy supplies.

You May Like

Multimedia Obama, Modi Break Nuclear Deal Deadlock

Impasse over liability issues had been stalling bilateral civilian nuclear cooperation; deal reached at start of US president's three-day visit to India More

WHO's Late Efforts in Tackling Ebola Highlight Need for Reform

Health experts debate measures to reform agency’s response to global public health emergencies in special one-day session on deadly outbreak More

One Tumultuous Year in Power for CAR's President

As sectarian violence raged across Central African Republic, interim President Catherine Samba-Panza has Herculean task: to end civil war and put country back on right track More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments page of 2
    Next 
by: Michaelcald from: odessa ukraine
June 19, 2014 12:41 PM
Mr Putin is a fine one to call people liars !! He has told so many lies that people are losing count of the lies that he has told. How many times has he told the world he is pulling troops from the border of Ukraine but only adds more troops ? Protecting Russian speakers ? Everyone in Ukraine speaks Russian including the President of Ukraine.

Ukraine now has a Ukrainian President not a puppet from Moscow controlled by Putin. It is only right that Ukraine has a President that stands for the country not for going to the National Bank Of Ukraine and stealing millions of dollars daily and then taking the funds to Russia with the blessing of Mr Putin. Many of the people killed thus far are from Russia and have been sent back to Russia. Why cannot someone simply say that this conflict is all about money.


by: Michaelcald from: odessa ukraine
June 19, 2014 12:34 PM
Everyone in Ukraine is sick of this situation. I doubt that Russians supplied the tanks to the criminal mercenaries in the East of Ukraine. Here is the thing , most people in Donetsk and Lugansk simply want this over with. When the money stops this will end . This conflict has nothing to do with religion, nothing to do with language but it does has everything to do with money. NATO will not attack Russia, whomever thinks that needs to have a reality check. No one needs to attack Russia they will not need to.

This conflict is simply about MONEY all conflicts are about money. Russian language speakers ??? Everyone in Ukraine speaks Russian !!! Putin is a terrible leader and will lead Russia to a collapse. No one needs to attack Russia. Crimea will cost Russia hundreds of Billions of dollars. Russian news is advertising all flights to Simferopol are sold out, that is a lie, there are very few people on airplane flights to Simferopol. Russian media is so full of lies many countries have stopped airing Russian news. Russia is being lead into the past by Mr Putin, good job. The world is very hostile to Russians now. No one wants Russian people and no one wants their dirty money. Think about what you have done Mr Putin !!!


by: Joe from: USA
June 19, 2014 10:48 AM
First thing lost in war is the truth.


by: StopWWIII from: US
June 19, 2014 9:58 AM
Media must stop calling Donetsk/Luhansk rebels separatists. These are also Ukrainians of Russian origin. They lived there for 1000 of years longer than US existed. What they want is Federalization and official Russian language - 2 things that were not given to them by Ukraine government. Instead Ukraine government with US support started killing them and all civilians along.

In Response

by: Michaelcald from: odessa ukraine
June 19, 2014 3:40 PM
Ukraine has never been part of Russia. The Russians sent criminals from Russia to Ukraine to work in the coal mines. Donetsk does have some Russian criminal heritage, is that what you are talking about ?? Crimea belonged to the Turks for hundreds of years longer than it belonged to Russia so by Putins logic Crimea should really go back to Turkey !! Putin continues to alienate Russia from the world. He fills the Russian people full of lies. I can name several lies that he told in the last few months. Who would believe Putin now ?? Your leader is a directly responsible of how all Russian people will be treated in the future.


by: Patrick Carroll from: Ireland
June 19, 2014 4:06 AM
As someone who has longstanding business relations with Ukraine and it's people, I concur with every syllable of this article.

In other words, anyone who thinks Putin will let go of the Donbass without being forced too, is deluded.

Likewise, the explosion on the gas line was to garner support from West European countries for the planned South Stream pipe line

In Response

by: Bogart724 from: Oak Grove, Louisiana
June 19, 2014 1:01 PM
If there is any justice in this wretched world, Russia will end up owning all of southern and eastern Ukraine. Let the crazies have the remainder of mess....


by: Bobby from: Ukraine
June 19, 2014 3:00 AM
"modern T-64" tanks? so 1964 is modern and the "monument" tank being jump started, the IS-3 (Iosif Stalin-3) made 1944-1960+, are ancient history :)? Russia doesn't use any of these 'modern' tanks.


by: Dimking
June 19, 2014 2:00 AM
Do you really think Russia has only 3 tanks?
T-64 are out of service in Russia btw.


by: Bogart724 from: Oak Grove, Louisiana
June 19, 2014 12:21 AM
So what if Russia is arming the Separatists. She should arm them and America should mind her own business and stay out of the matter. Nothing that America might do, concerning the Ukraine, except stay out of her troubles, will prove profitable. If she continues to meddle, the troubles that she will brew for herself will only multiply and become worse....


by: Peter from: New York
June 18, 2014 11:59 PM
"three modern T-64 tanks"

Tanks built in 1964 are considered modern by Voice of America?

And considering that Ukrainian Army already deployed about hundred of tanks in eastern regions. Isn't it kind of silly to send just three tanks?

In Response

by: LES1 from: Ukraine
June 19, 2014 1:44 PM


As reported previously in the National Security Council, in Donetsk appeared - new Russian tanks T-72. June 17 armored vehicles moved by terrorists.



by: mo from: usa
June 18, 2014 11:53 PM
Couple of little details.
1) Russia stopped manufacturing T-64 about 30 years ago but Ukraine still does.
2) Several T-64 tanks were captured from Ukrainian army by the separatists several weeks ago

Comments page of 2
    Next 

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Worldwide Photo Workshops Empower Youthi
X
Julie Taboh
January 23, 2015 11:08 PM
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 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.
Video

Video Secular, Religious Kurds Face Off in Southeast Turkey

Turkey’s predominantly Kurdish southeast has been rocked by violence between religious and secular Kurds. Dorian Jones reports on the reasons behind the stand-off from the region's main city of Diyarbakir, which suffered the bloodiest fighting.
Video

Video Kenya: Misuse of Antibiotics Leading to Resistance by Immune System

In Kenya, the rise of drug resistant bacteria could reverse the gains made by medical science over diseases that were once treatable. Kenyans could be at risk of fatalities as a result if the power in antibiotics is not preserved. Lenny Ruvaga has more on the story from Nairobi.
Video

Video Solar-Powered Plane Getting Ready to Circumnavigate Globe

Pilots of the solar plane that already set records flying without a drop of fuel are close to making their first attempt to fly the craft around the globe. They plan to do it in 25 flying days over a five month period. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video How Experts Decide Ethiopia Has the Best Coffee

Ethiopia’s coffee has been ranked as the best in the world by an international group of coffee connoisseurs. Not surprisingly, coffee is a top export for the country. But at home it is a source of pride. Marthe van der Wolf in Addis Ababa decided to find out what makes the bean and brew so special and how experts make their determinations.
Video

Video Yazidi Refugees at Center of Political Fight Between Turkey, Kurds

The treatment of thousands of Yazidis refugees who fled to Turkey to escape attacks by Islamic State militants has become the center of a dispute between the Turkish government and the country's pro-Kurdish movement. VOA's Dorian Jones reports.
Video

Video World’s Richest 1% Forecast to Own More Than Half of Global Wealth

The combined wealth of the world's richest 1 percent will overtake that of the remaining 99 percent at some point in 2016, according to the anti-poverty charity Oxfam. Campaigners are demanding that policymakers take action to address the widening gap between the ‘haves’ and the ‘have nots’, as Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.

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