News / Europe

Russia Warns Ukraine Against Use of Force

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov (L), shakes hands with China's President Xi Jinping during a meeting at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, Tuesday, April 15, 2014.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov (L), shakes hands with China's President Xi Jinping during a meeting at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, Tuesday, April 15, 2014.
William Ide
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has warned Kyiv that if it uses force against pro-Russian protesters in Ukraine, Moscow will pull out of a multilateral conference on the issue scheduled for later this week.

The warning from Russia's foreign minister came Tuesday during a short visit to Beijing, where he met with his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi and China's President Xi Jinping.

Lavrov said "You can't send in tanks and at the same time hold talks. The use of force sabotages the opportunity for the four-party negotiations to be held in Geneva," he added.

Lavrov made his comments during at a joint press conference with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi. Wang told reporters that the decision to hold multilateral talks in Geneva on Thursday is a positive step.

He said China welcomes the fact that all relevant parties - including Russia, the United States, the European Union and Ukraine - are working on the establishment of multilateral talks. "We would be happy to see it succeed as it is in line with China's calls to advocating peace and talks." he said.

At a time when Russia is finding itself increasingly at odds with Western powers, its ties with China are strengthening. Statements released by China's foreign ministry after Tuesday's meetings highlighted the growing closeness between Moscow and Beijing.

Chinese officials say Lavrov's trip to Beijing was largely a visit to finalize preparations for a visit to China next month by Russian President Vladimir Putin.

During President Xi Jinping's meeting with Lavrov, China's leader stressed the great importance of strategic ties between the two countries, according to a foreign ministry statement. Xi also said both were experiencing a historic highpoint in ties and that relations would not only benefit both countries and their people, but help promote peace and stability in the world.

The statement said that in addition to discussing Putin's upcoming visit, the two also talked about the situation in Ukraine, with Xi outlining China's views. The statement did not elaborate.

As China works to grow its ties with Russia, the situation in Ukraine has tested Beijing on the diplomatic front. When the United Nations voted on a resolution condemning the separatist referendum in Crimea, China abstained.

That move further isolated Russia, but it also kept Beijing from aligning itself unequivocally with the United States and Europe.

Jonathan Pollack of the Brookings Institution in Washington says the Chinese are of several minds when it comes to the Ukraine situation.

"On the one hand, Ukraine is very far distant from China and they know it and it is not connected to what the Chinese would deem their vital interests or what they call their core interests," he said. "On the other hand, the Chinese are well aware that the Russians have chosen to violate policies and principles that China holds dear or claims to hold dear about protection of territorial sovereignty, no intrusion on the internal affairs of another state."

Russia's annexation of Crimea has heightened concerns in Asia that China might use force to pursue its territorial claims in the region.

Speaking to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee last week, Daniel Russel, U.S. assistant secretary of state for East Asia, told lawmakers that the sanctions against Russia from the United States and the European Union should have a chilling effect on anyone in China who might consider using Russia's annexation of Crimea as a model.

China says the two are completely different issues and that Beijing has made its position on both its territorial claims and Ukraine clear.

You May Like

Jihadist Assassin says Goal of Tunisia Murders Was Chaos

Abu Muqatil at-Tunusi’s remarks in a propaganda interview also cast light on attack on Bardo Museum More

Russia Denies License to Tatar-Language TV Station in Crimea

OSCE official says denial shows 'politically selective censorship of free and independent voices in Crimea is continuing' More

Kenyan Startups Tackle Expensive Remittances Through Bitcoin

Some think services could give Western Union a run for its money, though others say it’s still got a long way to go More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Alfredo G from: Orlando Fl
April 15, 2014 6:48 PM
The Russian are a ocean of contradictions when they are talking about of the self-determination. In Syria conflict they are support politic about it not intervention but in Ukraine it does all contrary.

I think the communist only change the operation face.

by: Rob Swift from: Great Britain
April 15, 2014 12:56 PM
The new world order is an east - west division with Russia and America. At the centre is Europe with a north - south division which in turn centres on the queen of the north (Elizabeth) and the Queen of the South. Authority is with America so best not give Russia any moves.None at all.

by: Carlos .. . from: Ukraine and CA
April 15, 2014 12:47 PM
Dig this President Obama! The only way to stop a dictator is to let him know you are stronger than he is and that you are willing to fight. You need to "man up" and quit surrendering to bully dictators ! The Syrian dictator Assad should have been gone 1000 days ago like the dictator Gaddafi. The Kremlin has been running a dictatorship since it ended elections in 2004 .. who yes .. there are elections now but the Kremlin must approve the candidates! And the Kremlin took over all three national TV networks! Journalism is free as long as you can stay alive.. The Kremlin wants Ukraine to join a Union with two other dictatorships, Kazakistan and Belarus, where the dictators have been ruling for 20 years! Get real!

by: VT_FARMER from: VT
April 15, 2014 12:42 PM
Regarding Russia: anyone who promises more of what they are already doing must be stood up against, regardless. To dodge the bullet in your face only puts you in the path of the one in your back.
Liberty isn't for cowards.

by: WW from: DC
April 15, 2014 12:39 PM
Funny guy this Lavrov. In Syria talks he specifically spoke of the Syrian government's need to protect its citizens when a ceasefire was presented as a precondition for talks with Assad. Now that it's Ukraine, the Russians provoke unrest, instigate violence, then when the Ukrainian government wants to move in to bring back some normality, they're saying this will threaten the planned talks. That whole Kremlin cabal is just full of hypocrites.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
For Obama, It's More Business Than Friendships With World Leadersi
X
Aru Pande
April 01, 2015 9:09 PM
The rift between President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has put a spotlight on the importance of the American leader’s personal relationships with other world leaders and what role such friendships play in foreign policy. VOA's Aru Pande reports.
Video

Video For Obama, It's More Business Than Friendships With World Leaders

The rift between President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has put a spotlight on the importance of the American leader’s personal relationships with other world leaders and what role such friendships play in foreign policy. VOA's Aru Pande reports.
Video

Video Buhari: Nigeria Has ‘Embraced Democracy’

Nigeria woke up to a new president-elect Wednesday, Muhammadu Buhari. But people say democracy is the real winner as the country embarks on its first peaceful handover of power since the end of military rule in 1999. VOA’s Anne Look reports from Abuja.
Video

Video Tiny Camera Sees Inside Blood Vessels

Ahead of any surgical procedure, doctors try to learn as much as possible about the state of the organs they plan to operate on. A new camera developed in the Netherlands can now make that easier - giving surgeons an incredibly detailed look inside blood vessels, all the way to the patient’s heart. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Latin American Groups Seek Fans at Texas Music Festival

Latin American music groups played all over Austin, Texas, during the recent South by Southwest festival, and some made fans out of locals as well as people from around the world who had come to hear music. Such exposure can boost such groups' image back home. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Stockton Community, Police, Work to Improve Relations

Relations are tense between minority communities and police departments around the United States following police shootings that have generated widely-publicized protests. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports from Stockton, California, where police and community groups are working toward solutions, with backing from Washington.
Video

Video Indiana Controversy Highlights Divergent Meanings of Religious Freedom

Indiana’s state government has triggered a nationwide controversy by approving a law that critics say is aimed at allowing discrimination against gays and lesbians. The controversy stems from divergent notions of religious freedom in America. VOA's Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Report: State of Black America a 'Tale of Two Nations'

The National Urban League has described this year's "State of Black America" report as a "tale of two nations." The group's annual report, released earlier this month (March), found that under an equality index African Americans had only 72% parity compared to whites in areas such as education, economics, health, social justice and civic engagement. It’s a gap that educators and students at Brooklyn’s Medgar Evers College are looking to close. VOA's Daniela Schrier reports from the school.
Video

Video Film Tells Story of Musicians in Mali Threatened by Jihadists

At this year's annual South by Southwest film and music festival in Austin, Texas, some musicians from Mali were on hand to promote a film about how their lives were upturned by jihadists who destroyed ancient treasures in the city of Timbuktu and prohibited anyone from playing music under threat of death. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Austin, some are afraid to return to their hometowns even though the jihadists are no longer in control there.
Video

Video Ebola Vaccine Trials Underway in West Africa

Ebola has claimed the lives of more than 10,000 people in West Africa. Since last summer, researchers have rushed to get anti-Ebola vaccines into clinical trials. While it's too early to say that any of the potential vaccines work, some scientists say they are seeing strong results from some of the studies. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
Video

Video Philippines Wants Tourists Spending Money at New Casinos

Tourism is a multi-billion dollar industry in the Philippines. Close to five million foreign visitors traveled there last year, perhaps lured by the country’s tropical beaches. But Jason Strother reports from Manila that the country hopes to entice more travelers to stay indoors and spend money inside new casinos.
Video

Video Civilian Casualties Push Men to Join Rebels in Ukraine

The continued fighting in eastern Ukraine and the shelling of civilian neighborhoods seem to be pushing more men to join the separatist fighters. Many of the new recruits are residents of Ukraine made bitter by new grievances, as well as old. VOA's Patrick Wells reports.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.

VOA Blogs

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