Kerry: Russia Agrees to Seek Diplomatic Solution
Russian troops on Ukraine's border aren't helping, Kerry adds
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Mar 30, 2014 6:31 PM CDT
John Kerry, left, shakes hands with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov before their meeting at the Russian ambassador's residence about the situation in Ukraine, in Paris, March 30, 2014.   (Jacquelyn Martin)

(Newser) – John Kerry said today the United States and Russia agree on the need for a diplomatic solution for Ukraine, which would have to be at the table for negotiations. He also said the Russian troop buildup along the border is creating a climate of fear and intimidation in Ukraine, even though the troops are still on Russian soil. "The question is not one of right or legality," he said. "The question is one of strategic appropriateness and whether it's smart at this moment of time to have troops massed on the border."

Kerry said Ukraine must make the decision about a Russian proposal of federalization of Ukraine. "It is not up to us to make any decision or agreement regarding federalization. It is up to Ukrainians." Kerry made the comments after a lengthy meeting with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov at the residence of the Russian ambassador to France. At a separate briefing, Lavrov said that he and Kerry discussed the possibility of a federated Ukrainian state at "very, very constructive" talks. He said he and Kerry agreed to work with the Ukrainian government to improve rights for Russian-speaking Ukrainians and disarming "irregular forces and provocateurs." Click to read about Lavrov's earlier remarks, or Vladimir Putin's phone call to President Obama.

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Showing 3 of 28 comments
Mar 31, 2014 10:31 AM CDT
Newsflash: When one side gets everything they want, and you don't get anything you want, that is not diplomacy.
Mar 31, 2014 8:47 AM CDT
How can any half way sensible person ever again believe in Russia after it trashed it's International Treaty giving Ukraine (including Crimea) as an Independant Nation in return for the Ukraine giving up all it's nuclear stocks. If Russia can tear up that Treaty, they can tear up any treaty, meaning trust between Russia & the rest of the world is not possible. Kerry is one if not the weakest person to send anywhere to negotiate anything. This will end in yet another Putin triumph, but will also end badly for Ukraine/Russia/ World.
Mar 31, 2014 6:01 AM CDT
Now this story has a beautiful spin to it Good job Lurch