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'Dire' Ukraine Situation Getting Worse: US

Russia 'failing miserably' at peace as Kerry, other world leaders head to Kiev

(Newser) - Despite Vladimir Putin's posturing for a peaceful resolution to the Russia-Ukraine conflict , a senior US State Department official says Eastern Ukraine's security position is "dire" and Russia is "failing miserably" in its peace efforts, CNN reports. The official spoke today on John Kerry's plane as... More »

Russia Mad at Putin's 'I Could Take Kiev in 2 Weeks' Leak

Because it leaked, not because he didn't say it

(Newser) - Vladmir Putin supposedly told the head of the European Commission in a private phone call that "if I wanted to, I could take Kiev in two weeks," reports La Repubblica via the New York Times . The Kremlin hit back today, saying that even if Putin did say that,... More »

Darth Vader Running for Mayor in Kiev

Odessa, too, though he must settle for being a write-in candidate

(Newser) - Ukraine holds elections this weekend, and Vladimir Putin has promised to honor the results, reports AP . But what if he has to deal with Darth Vader? A candidate by that name (and uniform) is running for mayor in both Kiev and Odessa, and his videos have become a sensation in... More »

What's Clear After Ukraine Vote: Not Much

Ukraine president calls sovereignty referendum a 'farce'

(Newser) - In the wake of eastern Ukraine's vote on independence yesterday, one word is showing up repeatedly in media reports: unclear. The referendum organizers' preliminary results show those who cast a ballot overwhelmingly voted in favor of sovereignty for Donetsk and Luhansk, but beyond that much is uncertain—and even... More »

On Brink of War, Ukraine Stops Flights

Both sides bury their dead as Germany makes dire pronouncement

(Newser) - The government in Kiev appears to have today blocked all international flights into, and many flights out of, the Ukraine's restive east in the wake of yesterday's violence and in anticipation of violence ahead of Friday's holiday commemorating World War II. At least 20 flights out of... More »

Biden Blasts Russia: Stop 'Hiding Behind Masks'

Says US will never recognize Crimea annexation

(Newser) - Russia's annexation of Crimea may seem like a done deal, but the US isn't about to recognize it, Joe Biden vowed today. The vice president is in Kiev to show support for the government there, and today he promised financial aid, help weaning Ukraine off Russia's suddenly... More »

Elite Ukrainian Troops Stopped by Drunk Civilians

Humiliated Kiev tries to pretend it was a cunning plot

(Newser) - So much for Ukraine's military operation in the east. Both columns of supposedly elite troops and armored vehicles sent to the region surrendered without a fight yesterday in the face of peaceful resistance from civilians, a defeat so humiliating that one Kiev politician tried to pretend it was actually... More »

Biden Headed to Kiev Next Week

Separatists take over more government buildings

(Newser) - With separatists extending their reach in eastern Ukraine, the White House says Joe Biden is headed to Kiev to meet with leaders. The vice president will head to the country on April 22, CNN reports. This Thursday will see talks between Ukraine, Russia, the US, and the EU. Meanwhile, regional... More »

Ukraine to Separatists: This Is Over in 48 Hours

Protesters in east erect barricades, build bombs

(Newser) - Pro-Russia protesters are bolstering their defenses in eastern Ukraine as Kiev threatens to use force to settle the situation. "A resolution to this crisis will be found within the next 48 hours," Ukraine's interior minister says, per Reuters . "For those who want dialogue, we propose talks... More »

Ukraine Accuses Police 'Black Unit' of Mass Murder

12 members of Berkut riot police detained

(Newser) - Ukraine has arrested 12 riot police on suspicion that they gunned down peaceful protesters in Kiev during the demonstrations that led to the ouster of President Viktor Yanukovich. More than 100 people were killed in the protests, and the since-disbanded Berkut police force has long been considered responsible. The 12... More »

It Wasn't Civil War in Ukraine, It Was 'Revolution'

Filmmaker recounts scene when government set upon protesters

(Newser) - The deadly violence in Ukraine that culminated in the ouster of President Viktor Yanukovich began as "a peaceful demonstration," a protester and filmmaker identified only as Yana writes for CNN . It was the government that turned it into a slaughter in Kiev's main square, after reneging on... More »

Ukraine Hunts Ex-Leader on Mass Murder Arrest Warrant

US warns Russia against intervention

(Newser) - Ousted Ukraine President Viktor Yanukovich is now officially a fugitive from justice, just two days after the country's parliament voted to remove him from office . The country's interim interior minister has issued an arrest warrant accusing the ex-leader of "mass murder of peaceful citizens" over the deaths... More »

Ukraine Parliament Hands Presidency to Tymoshenko Ally

Parliament speaker gives MPs til Tuesday to form government; Yanukovych still missing

(Newser) - The whereabouts and legitimacy of Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych are still unclear today, after he left the capital and archrival Yulia Tymoshenko was freed from prison and returned to Kiev to address a massive, adoring crowd . Ukraine's newly emboldened legislature voted today to hand the president's powers to... More »

Ukraine Opposition Signs Peace Deal, But... remains to be seen whether protesters accept the deal

(Newser) - Ukraine's opposition leaders today signed an international deal with the country's president intended to end battles between police and protesters that have killed scores and injured hundreds , the AP reports. President Viktor Yanukovich's office stated earlier that the government and the opposition had agreed to initial the... More »

'Almost-Medieval Melee' Claims 70 Lives in Kiev

Short-lived Ukraine truce comes to violent end, with death toll climbing

(Newser) - The truce was as short-lived as you can get, with fierce clashes between police and protesters breaking out in Kiev just hours after it was announced. Reports say firearms are being used by both sides in the battle over Independence Square, marking a "new and ominous phase," reports... More »

Ukraine President: We've Got a Truce

Development comes as US, EU consider sanctions

(Newser) - It's a welcome break from the violence in Kiev: Ukraine's president and opposition leaders say they have agreed to a truce, reports Reuters . The development comes a day after a crackdown in Kiev left more than two dozen dead and hundreds more injured, prompting the US and Europe... More »

Kiev Now a 'Battle Zone,' With 26 Dead

Chaos in Ukraine as police launch fresh assault against protesters

(Newser) - At least 26 people have been killed and hundreds more injured in the worst violence in Ukraine's post-Soviet history, according to the country's health ministry, which says the dead include 10 police officers and a journalist. The mayhem began as anti-government protesters clashed with security forces yesterday, and... More »

Sheer 'Mayhem' Rocks Ukraine

19 dead as Kiev protests explode

(Newser) - "Mayhem" in Ukraine , declares the New York Times , amid reports that anti-government protests have boiled over in Kiev's bloodiest day since President Viktor Yanukovich turned down an EU deal in November. Nineteen were killed in street clashes, including six policemen, reports the BBC , and details are a bit... More »

Ukrainian Activist: I Was Crucified

He's become the bloodied face of the opposition movement

(Newser) - US and Russian diplomats traded blame over the volatile situation in Ukraine today, but more attention continues to be paid to an anti-government protester who claims to have been tortured. Not just tortured, "crucified." Dmytro Bulatov says he got kidnapped and held for about a week before his... More »

3 Dead as Ukraine Cops Storm Barricades

Medics say 2 protesters were shot dead, 1 fell

(Newser) - Three protesters have died in clashes with police in the Ukrainian capital today, according to a medic for the protesters, in a development that will likely escalate the country's two-month-long political crisis. One activist died in the hospital after falling from a high altitude at the site of the... More »

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