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 unrest continues:
- Separatists have effectively taken over the eastern city of Slaviansk, Reuters reports. They've seized government buildings and established barricades outside the city. The mayor says she supports the movement.
- Separatists have also taken control of the police station in Kramatorsk, after a gunfight with police, and they've seized government buildings in the city of Druzhkovka, the BBC reports.
- The White House has condemned action "by pro-Russian separatists, apparently with support from Russia," said a rep, noting "similar so-called protest activities in Crimea before Russia's purported annexation." The US called on Vladimir Putin "to cease all efforts to destabilize Ukraine."
- Kiev, for its part, slammed "a display of external aggression from Russia," saying an "operational response plan" was underway in the interior and defense ministries.
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