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

Beijing Warns US on S. China Sea Patrols

Warning follows news reports Thursday that US military is planning to sail warships close to artificial islands Beijing has been aggressively building More

Election Campaigning Begins in Ivory Coast

No one expecting a repeat of 2009-2010 post-election conflict, but campaign getting off to tense start with only 4 of 10 candidates agreeing to sign code of good conduct More

Indian PM Calls for Unity Amid Tense Climate Over Beef Attacks

Recent series of beef-related incidents seen as signs of rising intolerance toward Muslims and other religious minorities More

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.
House Republicans in Chaos as Speaker Favorite Withdrawsi
Jim Malone
October 09, 2015 12:32 AM
The Republican widely expected to become the next speaker of the House of Representatives shocked his colleagues Thursday by announcing he was withdrawing his candidacy. The decision by Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy means the race to succeed retiring Speaker John Boehner is now wide open. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone reports.

Video House Republicans in Chaos as Speaker Favorite Withdraws

The Republican widely expected to become the next speaker of the House of Representatives shocked his colleagues Thursday by announcing he was withdrawing his candidacy. The decision by Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy means the race to succeed retiring Speaker John Boehner is now wide open. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone reports.

Video German, US Officials Investigate Volkswagen

German officials have taken steps to restore some of the reputation their car industry has lost after a recent Volkswagen diesel emissions scandal. Authorities have searched Volkswagen headquarters and other locations in an effort to identify the culprits in the creation of software that helps cheat on emission tests. Meanwhile, a group of lawmakers in Washington held a hearing to get to the bottom of the cheating strategy that was first discovered in the United States. Zlatica Hoke reports.

Video Why Are Gun Laws So Hard for Congress to Tackle?

Since taking office, President Barack Obama has spoken out or issued statements about 15 mass shootings. The most recent shooting, in which 10 people were killed at a community college, sparked outrage over the nation's gun laws. But changing those laws isn't as easy as many think. VOA's Carolyn Presutti reports.

Video Hungary Criticized for Handling of Refugees

Amnesty International has accused Hungary of breaking multiple international and European human rights laws in its handling of the refugee crisis. As Henry Ridgwell reports, thousands of migrants and refugees continue to travel through the Balkans to Hungary every day.

Video Iraqi-Kurdish Teachers Vow to Continue Protest

Sixteen people were injured when police used tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse teachers and other public employees who took to the streets in Iraq’s Kurdish north, demanding their salaries from the Kurdish Regional Government (KRG). VOA’s Dilshad Anwar, in Sulaimaniya, caught up with protesting teachers who say they have not been paid for three months. Parke Brewer narrates his report.

Video Syrian Village Community Faces Double Displacement in Lebanon

Driven by war from their village in southwestern Syria, a group of families found shelter in Lebanon, resettling en masse in a half-built university to form one of the biggest settlements of its kind in Lebanon. Three years later, however, they now face being kicked out and dispersed in a country where finding shelter as a refugee can be especially tough. John Owens has more for VOA from the city of Saida, also known as Sidon.

Video Bat Colony: Unusual Tourist Attraction in Texas

The action hero Batman might be everyone’s favorite but real bats hardly get that kind of adoration. Put more than a million of these creatures of the night together and it only evokes images of horror. Sarah Zaman visited the largest urban bat colony in North America to see just how well bat and human get along with each other.

Video Device Shows Promise of Stopping Motion Sickness

It’s a sickening feeling — the dizziness, nausea and vomiting that comes with motion sickness. But a device now being developed could stop motion sickness by suppressing certain signals in the brain. VOA’s Deborah Block reports.

Video Making a Mint

While apples, corn, and cranberries top the list of fall produce in the US, it’s also the time to harvest gum, candy, and toothpaste—or at least the oil that makes them minty fresh. Erika Celeste reports from South Bend, Indiana on the mint harvest.

Video Activists Decry Lagos Slum Demolition

Acting on a court order, authorities in Nigeria demolished a slum last month in the commercial capital, Lagos. But human rights activists say the order was illegal, and the community was razed to make way for a government housing project. Chris Stein has more from Lagos.

Video TPP Agreed, But Faces Stiff Opposition

President Barack Obama promoted the Trans-Pacific Partnership on Tuesday, one day after 12 Pacific Rim nations reached the free trade deal in Atlanta. The controversial pact that would involve about 40 percent of global trade still needs approval by lawmakers in respective countries. Zlatica Hoke reports Obama is facing strong opposition to the deal, including from members of his own party.

Video Ukranian Artist Portrays Putin in an Unusual Way

As Russian President Vladimir Putin was addressing the United Nations in New York last month, he was also being featured in an art exhibition in Washington. It’s not a flattering exhibit. It’s done by a Ukrainian artist in a unique medium. And its creator says it’s not only a work of art - it’s a political statement. VOA’s Tetiana Kharchenko has more.

VOA Blogs