News / Europe

    Ukraine's Campaign Against Pro-Russia Forces Angers Residents in East

    FILE - Pro-Russian gunmen listen to instructions from their commander, center, behind barricades in Slovyansk, eastern Ukraine, Friday, May 2, 2014.
    FILE - Pro-Russian gunmen listen to instructions from their commander, center, behind barricades in Slovyansk, eastern Ukraine, Friday, May 2, 2014.
    There was heavy fighting Monday on the outskirts of the eastern Ukrainian city of Slovyansk, as government security forces resumed operations aimed at wresting control of the town from pro-Russian militants. But the government lost another helicopter, and it isn’t winning the battle for hearts and minds.
     
    The Ukrainian government says its security forces are making progress in the struggle to dislodge anti-government fighters in the east, but it has still to advance on the center of Slovyansk, which has been the focus of the pro-Russian insurgency in the area. Separatist checkpoints cleared one day return the next -- or are rebuilt a few hundred meters nearer the besieged town.
     
    With little territory gained so far, the government’s campaign is deepening the anger of local residents, including 24-year-old secretary Nadin.
     
    “They had a lot of guns, machine guns, they shoot like this to all house, to all people, and my house is fully damaged, all windows,” said Nadin, mimicking gunfire.
     
    A short distance away a truck burns, choking people with black smoke. It was hit in the crossfire in the Slovyansk suburb of Semenovka, where a two-hour battle raged Monday. A yellow tarpaulin covers the body of the driver, lying in front of the cafe Nadin’s mother owns.
     
    He was one of six killed, including a Ukrainian soldier, in the skirmish, doctors here said. The Ukrainian Interior Ministry said four people were killed Monday in the fighting and 30 wounded.
     
    Nadin’s house was hit - the windows on one side shattered, the siding badly damaged. Nadin and her family took cover as best they could.
     
    “I think after this shooting a lot of people will afraid of our government and I think they will ask for help to Russia,” said Nadin.
     
    The Ukrainian government’s campaign to dislodge protesters in Slovyansk and to tackle Moscow-backed militants in neighboring towns has angered the Kremlin, which warns it may intervene.
     
    Those threats took on a more menacing tone following the loss of life Friday in Odessa, a southern sea port most Ukrainians associate with balmy summer vacations. At least 40 people died there on Friday, most of them pro-Russian protesters killed in a burning building during a street battle that saw separatists and pro-unity activists trade Molotov cocktails.
     
    Ukraine’s interim prime minister, Arseniy Yatsenyuk, has called for unity, saying the violence across southeast Ukraine is being fomented by Moscow and only benefits the Kremlin. But the death toll in Odessa and Kyiv’s attempts to bring the east under control is hardening opinions.
     
    Igor, 58, a pro-Russian fighter, said he thinks the time for talking is over and dialogue and negotiation is impossible. It would be better to be with Russia now, he said.

    You May Like

    US Leaders Who Served in Vietnam War Look Back and Ahead

    In New York Times opinion piece, Secretary of State John Kerry, Senator John McCain and former Senator Bob Kerrey say as US strengthens relations with Vietnam, it is important to remember lessons learned from war

    Who Are US Allies in Fight Against Islamic State?

    There is little but opportunism keeping coalition together analysts warn — SDFs Arab militias are not united even among themselves, frequently squabble and don’t share Kurds' vision for post-Assad Syria

    Learning Foreign Language Helps US Soldiers Bridge Culture Gap

    Effective interaction with local populations part of everyday curriculum at Monterey, California, Defense Language Institute

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Vietnamese-American Youth Optimistic About Obama's Visit to Vietnami
    X
    Elizabeth Lee
    May 22, 2016 6:04 AM
    U.S. President Barack Obama's visit to Vietnam later this month comes at a time when Vietnam is seeking stronger ties with the United States. Many Vietnamese Americans, especially the younger generation, are optimistic Obama’s trip will help further reconciliation between the two former foes. Elizabeth Lee has more from the community called "Little Saigon" located south of Los Angeles.
    Video

    Video Vietnamese-American Youth Optimistic About Obama's Visit to Vietnam

    U.S. President Barack Obama's visit to Vietnam later this month comes at a time when Vietnam is seeking stronger ties with the United States. Many Vietnamese Americans, especially the younger generation, are optimistic Obama’s trip will help further reconciliation between the two former foes. Elizabeth Lee has more from the community called "Little Saigon" located south of Los Angeles.
    Video

    Video First-generation, Afghan-American Student Sets Sights on Basketball Glory

    Their parents are immigrants to the United States. They are kids who live between two worlds -- their parents' homeland and the U.S. For many of them, they feel most "American" at school. It can be tricky balancing both worlds. In this report, produced by Beth Mendelson, Arash Arabasadi tells us about one Afghan-American student who seems to be coping -- one shot at a time.
    Video

    Video Newest US Citizens, Writing the Next Great Chapter

    While universities across the United States honor their newest graduates this Friday, many immigrants in downtown Manhattan are celebrating, too. One hundred of them, representing 31 countries across four continents, graduated as U.S. citizens, joining the ranks of 680,000 others every year in New York and cities around the country.
    Video

    Video Vietnam Sees Strong Economic Growth Despite Incomplete Reforms

    Vietnam has transformed its communist economy to become one of the world's fastest-growing nations. While the reforms are incomplete, multinational corporations see a profitable future in Vietnam and have made major investments -- as VOA's Jim Randle reports.
    Video

    Video Qatar Denies World Cup Corruption

    The head of Qatar’s organizing committee for the 2022 World Cup insists his country's bid to host the soccer tournament was completely clean, despite the corruption scandals that have rocked the sport’s governing body, FIFA. Hassan Al-Thawadi also said new laws would offer protection to migrants working on World Cup construction projects. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
    Video

    Video Infrastructure Funding Puts Cambodia on Front Line of International Politics

    When leaders of the world’s seven most developed economies meet in Japan next week, demands for infrastructure investment world wide will be high on the agenda. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s push for “quality infrastructure investment” throughout Asia has been widely viewed as a counter to the rise of Chinese investment flooding into region.
    Video

    Video Democrats Fear Party Unity a Casualty in Clinton-Sanders Battle

    Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton claimed a narrow victory in Tuesday's Kentucky primary even as rival Bernie Sanders won in Oregon. Tensions between the two campaigns are rising, prompting fears that the party will have a difficult time unifying to face the presumptive Republican nominee, Donald Trump. VOA national correspondent Jim Malone has more from Washington.
    Video

    Video Portrait of a Transgender Marriage: Husband and Wife Navigate New Roles

    As controversy continues in North Carolina over the use of public bathrooms by transgender individuals, personal struggles with gender identity that were once secret are now coming to light. VOA’s Tina Trinh explored the ramifications for one couple as part of trans.formation, a series of stories on transgender issues.
    Video

    Video Amerikan Hero Flips Stereotype of Middle Eastern Character

    An Iranian American comedian is hoping to connect with American audiences through a film that inverts some of Hollywood's stereotypes about Middle Eastern characters. Sama Dizayee reports.
    Video

    Video Budding Young Inventors Tackle City's Problems with 3-D Printing

    Every city has problems, and local officials and politicians are often frustrated by their inability to solve them. But surprising solutions can come from unexpected places. Students in Baltimore. Maryland, took up the challenge to solve problems they identified in their city, and came up with projects and products to make a difference. VOA's June Soh has more on a digital fabrication competition primarily focused on 3-D design and printing. Carol Pearson narrates.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora