The four-side Geneva treaty on de-escalating tension in Ukraine has been adopted as roadmap for resolving the crisis. Promising to adhere to the agreement, Kiev demands that anti-government protesters in eastern Ukraine must be the first to follow it.
There are no Russian troops in the Donetsk Region, one of the leaders of the recently self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic, Denis Pushilin, told ITAR-TASS.
"There are none of them [Russian troops] here and probably there are some reasons for this. Although it would be easier with them as they would speed up holding of a referendum and would ensure it to be within legal field," Pushilin said.
Meanwhile pictures presented by Washington and Kiev as evidence of Russia's involvement in Ukraine appear not really to prove anything, as some of them have been attributed the wrong location. Several shots put forward as ‘proof’ were labeled as having been taken in Russia, when in fact they were all taken in Ukraine.
The error was pointed out by the photographer, conceded by the US State Department and then, by the New York Times, which had made the pictures public.
RT’s Anastasia Churkina has the details in her report.
The far-right extremist Right Sector group has relocated its HQ from Kiev to the southeastern city Dnepropetrovsk, said it’s nationalist leader Dmitry Yarosh who has been put on the international wanted list by Russia. According to him, it’s easier to monitor the situation in eastern Ukraine from Dnepropetrovsk.
Yarosh also denies using tycoon's funding “in politics.” However “when there is ongoing war we are not against them funding the army,” he noted.
The actions of law enforcement agencies during the government crackdown on EuroMaidan protests in Kiev on November 30 have been reviewed by a provisional investigative commission of the Ukrainian parliament. The results of the investigation say that the commission qualified them as "a creation of an organized criminal group, which was headed by former Interior Minister Vitaly Zakharchenko."
The Interior Ministry’s leadership as well as the head of the Kiev Berkut special forces were accused of criminal actions. The results of the investigation were handed to the Prosecutor General’s Office.
Around 60 percent of Ukrainians are in favor of friendly relations with Russia, according to a survey, conducted by Ukrainian pollsters Razumkov Center and the Rating Sociological Group, UNIAN reports.
More than 70 percent of Ukrainians, according to the poll, want to live in a unified state, while around 18 percent want it to be federal. Others have not yet made up their minds.
Around 60 percent of those questioned have spoken in favor of Ukraine joining the EU, while only one-third of respondents believe the country should seek NATO membership.
Russia’s Foreign Minister, in an interview with RT’s Sophie Shevardnadze, accused the US of trying to manipulate the situation in Ukraine.
“There is no reason not to believe that the Americans are running the show,” said Lavrov, referencing US Vice-President Joe Biden’s visit to Kiev and its coincidence with the renewed ‘counter-terror’ operation on activists in eastern Ukraine.
“It’s quite telling they chose the moment of the vice president of the US’ visit to announce the resumption of this operation, because the launching of this operation happened immediately after [head of the CIA] John Brennan’s visit to Kiev,” said Lavrov.
‘No reason not to believe Americans are running the show’ – Mr. Lavrov on who controls Kiev, full interview 16:30 GMT pic.twitter.com/pYGKs0Lpbc
— SophieCo (@SophieCo_RT) April 23, 2014
Ukraine's government said Wednesday that the United States had promised to stand by it in the face of aggression, Reuters reports, referring to a comment on US Vice-President Joe Biden’s visit to Ukraine made by First Deputy Prime Minister Vitaly Yarema.
"We have obtained the support of the United States that they will not leave us alone with an aggressor. We hope that in the event of Russian aggression, this help will be more substantive," Yarema said.
Members of the Ukrainian parliament, the Verkhovna Rada have not reached agreement concerning the amnesty of the participants of the recent protests in eastern Ukraine, said Batkivshchina (Fatherland) Party official Sergey Sobolev.
“I can’t say why the Party of Regions and the Communist Party refused to vote on the draft law,” he told journalists adding that there is no alternative draft to the amnesty law in the parliament.
According to Sobolev, this law is the same as the amnesty law applied to Maidan protesters.
French frigate Dupleix is expected to enter the Black Sea April 26-27, a military-diplomatic source told Itar-Tass. It was earlier announced the vessel would be there on April 14.
Once Dupleix arrives, the Black Sea will host three NATO vessels. The two others are French surveillance ship Dupuy de Lôme, which is expected to leave for the Mediterranean on April 30 and American frigate USS Taylor, which entered the Black Sea on April 22.
Authorities in the Donetsk Region have called on Kiev to sign an interim constitutional agreement to ease the current tension between the country’s east and west, says the temporary official website of the Donetsk Region.
“Dialogue is hampered by the fact that local reforms are impossible without making amendments to the Ukrainian Constitution, which is a long process,” the statement reads. “Currently the best solution is signing a temporary constitutional agreement, which would include issues like regional powers, elections of governors and the status of the Russian language.”
The statement says polls show the majority of residents want the Donetsk Region to be “an independent part of the united politically stable country and are waiting for real concessions from Kiev.”
The President of the European Parliament Martin Schulz warned sanctions against Russia will have serious economic and political reciprocation for EU states.
“In case of sanctions against Russia, we should prepare citizens of EU states to the fact that such measures will have certain influence on our economy: European energy tariffs will grow and European investment will be blocked in Russia,” Schulz said in an interview published by Le Parisien on Tuesday.