News / Europe

Russia, West Face Off Over Ukraine at UN

  • A pro-Russian gunman stands guard at a police station that was seized by pro-Russian militants, in the eastern Ukraine town of Slovyansk, April 13, 2014. 
  • A pro-Russian protester holds a shield at a check point, while black smoke from burning tires engulfs the area, in Slovyansk, April 13, 2014.
  • A pro-Russian armed man stands guard at a barricade in front of pro-Russian protesters near the police headquarters in Slovyansk, April 13, 2014. 
  • Pro-Russian men gather around a fire at a barricade near the police headquarters in Slovyansk, April 13, 2014. 
  • Pro-Russian men warm themselves near a fire at a barricade near the police headquarters in Slovyansk, April 13, 2014. 
  • Ukraine's Interior Minister told residents to stay indoors in anticipation of clashes between pro-Russian militants who have seized official buildings and Ukrainain security forces, in the eastern city of Slovyansk, April 13, 2014.
  • Interior Ministry members stand near men who were injured in clashes between pro-Russian and pro-Ukrainian supporters during rallies, in Kharkiv, Ukraine, April 13, 2014. 
  • Protesters hold a rally outside the mayor's office. Local media reported that separatist protesters seized control of the mayor's office in the town of Mariupol, eastern Ukraine, April 13, 2014.
  • A man climbs a post to remove a Ukrainian flag as protesters hold a rally outside the mayor's office in Mariupol, April 13, 2014. 
  • People gather after a costumed reenactment dedicated to the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Simferopol from fascist troops during the World War II outside the village of Kurtsy, near Simferopol, Crimea, April 13, 2014. 
  • A woman shouts and waves a Russian flag during the celebrations for the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Simferopol from fascist troops during the World War II outside the village of Kurtsy, near Simferopol, Crimea.
Ukrainian, Pro-Russian Militia Sustain Casualties in Slovyansk Gunfire
VOA News
Russia came under heavy criticism from world powers at an emergency meeting of the United Nations Security Council Sunday, as violent clashes flared between pro-Russia separatists and Kyiv government supporters in eastern Ukraine.
U.S. Ambassador Samantha Power and British Ambassador Mark Lyall Grant accused Russia of orchestrating the violence.
Power said the instability in Ukraine was "completely man-made." She said it was "written and choreographed" by Russia. Grant called on the Security Council to warn Russia against "further military escalation."
Russia, which called the meeting, rejected the charges. 

Russian Ambassador Vitaly Churkin called on the international community to demand that those who are in power in Kyiv stop war on their own citizens, referring to a warning by Ukraine’s government that it will use force against pro-Russia activists in the eastern part of Ukraine if they do not disarm.

In a televised speech Sunday, Ukraine's acting president, Oleksandr Turchynov, vowed Kyiv will not let Russia take over eastern Ukraine after its annexation of the Crimean peninsula last month.

He said he will grant amnesty to any pro-Russian separatists who lay down their weapons by Monday but vowed to use force against those who don't.
Turchynov accused Moscow of carrying out a war against Ukraine, once part of its Soviet empire.
"Blood has been shed in a war which the Russian Federation unleashed against Ukraine. The aggressor has not stopped but continues to incite unrest in Ukraine’s east. It's not a war between Ukrainians; it's an artificially created confrontation, whose goal is to see Ukraine weakened and destroyed as a country. But in the end it will weaken our enemies. Russia today has drawn condemnation from the entire civilized world,'' said Turchynov.
Russia’s Foreign Ministry immediately dismissed Turchynov’s order to launch the operation as "criminal" and called for its immediate review by the U.N. Security Council. A meeting is set for Sunday night.
Turchynov's speech came hours after Ukrainian special forces and pro-Russian militia exchanged gunfire in the eastern Ukrainian city of Slovyansk, with both sides reporting casualties.
Ukraine's interior minister, Arsen Avakov, said a security service officer was killed and another five wounded in the latest skirmish in the aftermath of Moscow's Crimea take-over last month.  At least one pro-Russian activist was also reported killed in the gunfire and two injured.
Russia draws condemnation

The escalation came a day after pro-Russian gunmen took over the Slovyansk police station, and government facilities in the largely Russian-speaking cities of Donetsk and Kramatorsk. 
U.S. ambassador to the U.N., Samantha Power, told ABC's This Week the unrest in eastern Ukraine "bears the tell-tale signs of Moscow's involvement."
In a statement, NATO chief Anders Fogh Rasmussen said he was "extremely concerned" about the increased tensions in the region.  He described it a "concerted campaign of violence by pro-Russian separatists" seeking to destabilize Ukraine.
Fogh Rasmussen called on Russia to "de-escalate the crisis" and pull back thousands of troops it massed on its border with Ukraine.
On Saturday, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, in a telephone call with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, warned there would be additional consequences beyond sanctions already imposed against Russian officials if Moscow did not move to ease tensions in eastern Ukraine.
Lavrov said the crisis was caused by the Kyiv government ignoring the "legitimate needs and interests" of eastern Ukraine's Russian-speaking population.
A White House National Security Council spokeswoman said Saturday the United States is concerned that Russian-speaking separatists - with apparent support from Moscow - are "inciting violence and sabotage" against the Ukrainian state. 
Moscow has repeatedly denied any role in Ukraine's unrest, which erupted in full two months ago when then-president Viktor Yanukovych fled the country amid protests in Kyiv.
Top diplomats from Russia, the United States, Ukraine and the European Union are set to hold emergency talks on the crisis April 17 in Geneva.  White House officials say U.S. Vice President Joe Biden will travel to Kyiv April 22.

You May Like

Video Americans, Tourists, Reflect on Meaning of Thanksgiving

VOA garnered opinions from several people soon after November 13 Paris attacks, which colored many of their thoughts

Video Thais Send Security Concerns Down the River

In northern Thailand, the annual tradition of constructing floating baskets to carry away the year’s bad spirits highlights the Loy Krathong festival

Video Tree Houses - A Branch of American Dream

Workshops aimed at teaching people how to build tree houses have become widely popular in America in recent years

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments page of 2
by: Jonathan huang from: Canada
April 14, 2014 12:02 AM
Yes Ukraine crisis is man made, however it started from the west orchestrated Kyev riot which ousted the legitimate president.
Now east Ukrainians have their right for freedom!

by: Not Again from: Canada
April 13, 2014 9:53 PM
"U.S. ambassador to the U.N., Samantha Power, told ABC's This Week the unrest in eastern Ukraine "bears the tell-tale signs of Moscow's involvement." And this was not predictable?
Given the massive sanctions, in the eyes of the EU leaders, that were impossed on Russia, after Crimea's take over, including the idea of not selling any weapons to Russia, this new worsening situation was fully predictable and expected.. The Russian Czar is really deterred, trembling in his little shoes, by stupidity of such useless moves against him. Such useless moves are bound to embolden even the weakest of authoritarian regimes to continue grabbing more territory.
The bad aspect of this deadly policy failures, is that each time the Czar becomes more agressive, the deterrent escalation, to actually do the job, will need to increase more than exponentially, very much approaching a limited war. Total stupidity risks having its total price, and then some, that will eventually need to be payed by the victims of war! A masive conflict is becoming more and more of a reality every day. Deterrence has failed; when deterrence fails war is not easily avoidable, so history repeats itself.

by: Realist from: California
April 13, 2014 8:32 PM
An objective assessment of the situation in Ukraine:
North and western Ukraine has cultural affiliation with eastern Europe. They were previously part of what is today Poland, Maldova and Hungary before 1880. They have have a lot to gain economically by way of migration to Europe to work and European subsidy hence the move to integrate with European union.
In contrast, southern and eastern Ukraine have strong cultural affiliation with Russia. More importantly, They have a lot to loose economically, at least, in the medium term, by joining Europe. It is the industrial heartland of Ukraine, mostly Agriculture and Steel which are inefficient and can't compete with Europe. Also the main market for these industries is Russia. These industires particularly steel depends heavily on Russian gas subsidies. So, this region of Ukraine will loose big time both culturally and economically if Ukraine joins European union now. So the are legitimately demanding referendum to decide their fate. Ukraine will do better trading with both Europe and Russia. The current situation in Ukraine is not just about Russian interest. Current Ukrainian leaders must pay attention to the concerns of their regions to find a lasting solution. It will be naive for them and their western backers to blame only Russia for current stand-off in Ukraine. "A word is enough for the wise" Let all men of goodwill put on their thinking cap and call a spade-a-spade regarding the situation in Ukraine. Blaming only Russia is not going to resolve the problem but a referendum will do.

by: five from: USA
April 13, 2014 8:24 PM
Uhh. Can't Russia simply veto anything the "Security Counsel" brings to vote?........silly.

by: meanbill from: USA
April 13, 2014 8:15 PM
ACCUSATIONS .. Accusations, accusations, is all you ever hear from the US and EU, against the Russian interference, and on an invasion of Ukraine -- (BUT?) -- has anybody even seen just (one) iota, or sliver of evidence, to support these US and EU claims? -- (JUST ONCE?) -- Wouldn't you like to see some actual evidence, to support the US and EU accusation? (JUST ONCE?), can't they show some actual proof, instead of this continuous propaganda.. .... REALLY?

by: Tom Murphy from: Northern Virginia
April 13, 2014 4:35 PM
Go Ukraine!! Drive out the hired Russian thugs and murderers!!
Comments page of 2

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Belgium-Germany Border Remains Porous, Even As Manhunt For Paris Attacker Continuesi
Ayesha Tanzeem
November 25, 2015 10:46 PM
One of the suspected gunmen in the Nov. 13 Paris attacks, Salah Abdeslam, evaded law enforcement, made his way to Belgium, and is now believed to have fled to Germany. VOA correspondent Ayesha Tanzeem makes the journey across the border from Belgium into Germany to see how porous the borders really are.

Video Belgium-Germany Border Remains Porous, Even As Manhunt For Paris Attacker Continues

One of the suspected gunmen in the Nov. 13 Paris attacks, Salah Abdeslam, evaded law enforcement, made his way to Belgium, and is now believed to have fled to Germany. VOA correspondent Ayesha Tanzeem makes the journey across the border from Belgium into Germany to see how porous the borders really are.

Video Islamic State Unfazed by Losses in Iraq, Syria

Progress in the U.S.-led effort to beat Islamic State on its home turf in Iraq and Syria has led some to speculate the terror group may be growing desperate. But counterterror officials say that is not the case, and warn the recent spate of terror attacks is merely part of the group’s evolution. VOA National Security correspondent Jeff Seldin has more.

Video Taiwan Looks for Role in South China Sea Dispute

The Taiwanese government is one of several that claims territory in the hotly contested South China Sea, but Taipei has long been sidelined in the dispute, overshadowed by China. Now, as the Philippines challenges Beijing’s claims in an international court at The Hague, Taipei is looking to publicly assert its claims. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.

Video Syrian Refugees in US Express Concern for Those Left Behind

Syrian immigrants in the United States are concerned about the negative tide of public opinion and the politicians who want to block a U.S. plan to accept 10,000 Syrian refugees. Zlatica Hoke reports many Americans are fighting to dispel suspicions linking refugees to terrorists.

Video After Paris Attacks, France Steps Up Fight Against IS

The November 13 Paris attacks have drawn increased attention to Syria, where many of the suspected perpetrators are said to have received training. French President Francois Hollande is working to build a broad international coalition to defeat Islamic State in Syria and in Iraq. Zlatica Hoke reports.

Video US, Cambodian Navies Pair Up in Gulf of Thailand

The U.S. Navy has deployed one of its newest and most advanced ships to Cambodia to conduct joint training drills in the Gulf of Thailand. Riding hull-to-hull with Cambodian ships, the seamen of the USS Fort Worth are executing joint-training drills that will help build relations in Southeast Asia. David Boyle reports for VOA from Preah Sihanouk province.

Video Americans Sharpen Focus on Terrorism

Washington will be quieter than usual this week due to the Thanksgiving holiday, even as Americans across the nation register heightened concerns over possible terrorist threats. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports new polling data from ABC News and the Washington Post newspaper show an electorate increasingly focused on security issues after the deadly Islamic State attacks in Paris.

Video World Leaders Head to Paris for Climate Deal

Heads of state from nearly 80 countries are heading to Paris (November 30-December 11) to craft a global climate change agreement. The new accord will replace the Kyoto Protocol on Climate Change that expired in 2012.

Video Uncertain Future for Syrian Refugee Resettlement in Illinois

For the trickle of Syrian refugees finding new homes in the Midwest city of Chicago, the call to end resettlement in many U.S. states is adding another dimension to their long journey fleeing war. Organizations working to help them integrate say the backlash since the Paris attacks is both harming and helping their efforts to provide refugees sanctuary. VOA's Kane Farabaugh reports.

Video Creating Physical Virtual Reality With Tiny Drones

As many computer gamers know, virtual reality is a three-dimensional picture, projected inside special googles. It can fool your brain into thinking the computer world is the real world. But If you try to touch it, it’s not there. Now Canadian researchers say it may be possible to create a physical virtual reality using tiny drones. VOA’s George Putic reports.

Video New American Indian Village Takes Visitors Back in Time

There is precious little opportunity to experience what life was like in the United States before its colonization by European settlers. Now, an American Indian village built in a park outside Washington is taking visitors back in time to experience the way of life of America's indigenous people. Carol Pearson narrates this report from VOA's June Soh.

Video Even With Hometown Liberated, Yazidi Refugees Fear Return

While the northern Iraqi town of Sinjar has been liberated from Islamic State forces, it's not clear whether Yazidi residents who fled the militants will now return home. VOA’s Mahmut Bozarslan talked with Yazidis, a religious and ethnic minority, at a Turkish refugee camp in Diyarbakır. Robert Raffaele narrates his report.

Video Nairobi Tailors Make Pope Francis’ Vestments

To ensure the pope is properly attired during his visit, the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops asked the Dolly Craft Sewing Project in the Nairobi slum of Kangemi to make the pope's vestments, the garments he will wear during the various ceremonies. Jill Craig reports.

Video Cross-Border Terrorism Puts Europe’s Passport-Free Travel in Doubt

The fallout from the Islamic State terror attacks in Paris has put the future of Europe’s passport-free travel area, known as the "Schengen Zone," in doubt. Several of the perpetrators were known to intelligence agencies, but were not intercepted. Henry Ridgwell reports from London European ministers are to hold an emergency meeting Friday in Brussels to look at ways of improving security.

Video El Niño Brings Unexpected Fish From Mexico to California

Fish in an unexpected spectrum of sizes, shapes and colors are moving north, through El Niño's warm currents from Mexican waters to the Pacific Ocean off California’s coast. El Nino is the periodic warming of the eastern and central Pacific Ocean. As Faiza Elmasry tells us, this phenomenon thrills scientists and gives anglers the chance of a once-in-a-lifetime big catch. Faith Lapidus narrates.

Video Terrorism in Many Forms Continues to Plague Africa

While the world's attention is on Paris in the wake of Friday night's deadly attacks, terrorism from various sides remains a looming threat in many African countries. Nigerian cities have been targeted this week by attacks many believe were staged by the violent Islamist group Boko Haram. In addition, residents in many regions are forced to flee their homes as they are terrorized by armed militias. Zlatica Hoke reports.

Video Study: Underage Marriage Rate Higher for Females in Pakistan

While attitudes about the societal role of females in Pakistan are evolving, research by child advocacy group Plan International suggests that underage marriage of girls remains a particularly big issue in the country. VOA’s Ayesha Tanzeem reports how such marriages leads to further social problems.

VOA Blogs