Sub-editor, World Desk, London, London
Peter's Feed
Jul 21, 2014

Fighting erupts in Ukraine as crash investigators arrive

DONETSK Ukraine (Reuters) – Ukrainian army tanks were reported to be launching an assault to break pro-Russian rebels’ hold on the eastern city of Donetsk on Monday in the first major outbreak of hostilities in the area since Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 was shot down last week.

A separatist leader said Ukrainian government forces were trying to break into Donetsk and fighting was under way near the railway station.

Jul 20, 2014

Ukraine accuses rebels of hiding plane crash evidence

KIEV (Reuters) – Ukraine on Sunday accused separatist rebels of hiding evidence that a Russian missile was used to shoot down a Malaysian airliner, while Britain said Moscow faced “pariah” status and the threat of further economic sanctions.

At the biggest crash site, where emergency workers had bagged dozens of bodies on Saturday, all had been taken away on Sunday morning. Empty, bloodstained military stretchers that had been used to carry them lay by the road.

Jul 20, 2014

West toughens calls on Russia to cooperate over downed Malaysian plane

HRABOVE/DONETSK Ukraine (Reuters) – Ukraine accused Russia and pro-Moscow rebels on Saturday of destroying evidence to cover up their guilt in the shooting down of a Malaysian airliner that has intensified a showdown between the Kremlin and Western powers.

As militants kept international monitors away from wreckage and scores of bodies festered for a fourth day on Sunday, Russian President Vladimir Putin urged the rebels to cooperate and insisted that a U.N.-mandated investigation must not leap to conclusions. Moscow denies involvement and has pointed a finger at Kiev’s military.

Jul 20, 2014

Ukraine, rebels argue over wreck; Europeans give Putin ‘last chance’

HRABOVE/DONETSK Ukraine (Reuters) – Ukraine accused Russia and pro-Moscow rebels on Saturday of destroying evidence to cover up their guilt in the shooting down of a Malaysian airliner that has accelerated a showdown between the Kremlin and Western powers.

As militants kept international monitors away from wreckage and scores of bodies festered for a third day, Russian President Vladimir Putin urged the rebels to cooperate and insisted that a U.N.-mandated investigation must not leap to conclusions. Moscow denies involvement and has pointed a finger at Kiev’s military.

Jul 19, 2014

Ukraine, rebels argue over wreckage, Germany says Putin has “last chance”

HRABOVE/DONETSK Ukraine (Reuters) – Ukraine accused Russia and pro-Moscow rebels on Saturday of destroying evidence of “international crimes” as guerrillas and foreign observers faced off over access to the wreckage of the downed Malaysian airliner.

As Kiev raised the stakes by saying it had evidence that a Russian fired the missile widely assumed to have killed all 298 aboard on Thursday, a separatist leader blamed Ukraine for the delay and called on Moscow to help in recovering bodies starting to rot after two days in baking summer heat on the steppe.

Mar 9, 2014

Warning shots fired to turn monitors back from Crimea

KIEV/SEVASTOPOL, Ukraine (Reuters) – Shots were fired in Crimea to warn off an unarmed international team of monitors and at a Ukrainian observation plane, as the standoff between occupying Russian forces and besieged Ukrainian troops intensified.

Russia’s seizure of the Black Sea peninsula, which began 10 days ago, has so far been bloodless, but its forces have become increasingly aggressive towards Ukrainian troops, who are trapped in bases and have offered no resistance.

Mar 8, 2014

Fresh confrontations raise tempers on ground in Crimea

KIEV/SEVASTOPOL, Ukraine (Reuters) – The mood darkened in Russian-occupied Crimea on Saturday after overnight confrontations between Russian troops and besieged Ukrainian soldiers raised tensions on the ground in the biggest East-West face-off since the Cold War.

Pressure levels have increased markedly in the two days since the region’s pro-Moscow leadership declared that it is now part of Russia and announced a March 16 referendum to confirm it.

Mar 4, 2014

In ‘propaganda’ war, Crimeans hear different reality

KIEV/SEVASTOPOL, Ukraine (Reuters) – Two days before Russian forces began the operation to seize Crimea, somebody threw two Molotov cocktails through the window of Black Sea TV.

“It was a warning to us, so that we would stop,” recalls Alexandra Kvitko, editor-in-chief of the only independent television station in the southern Ukrainian region. “But we continued.”

Mar 2, 2014

West scrambles, Kiev braces as Putin threatens Ukraine war

KIEV/BALACLAVA, Ukraine (Reuters) – The West faced its biggest confrontation with Russia since the Cold War and Ukraine marshaled its forces for defense after Russian President Vladimir Putin declared the right to invade his neighbor.

Ethnic Russian forces have already bloodlessly seized Crimea, an isolated Black Sea peninsula where most of the population are Russian and Moscow has a naval base, and sought to disarm the small Ukrainian contingents there on Sunday.

Jul 18, 2013

Exclusive: Egypt’s Brotherhood proposes first crisis talks via EU envoy

CAIRO (Reuters) – The Muslim Brotherhood said on Thursday it had proposed through an EU go-between a framework for talks to resolve Egypt’s political crisis, its first formal announcement of an offer for negotiations since President Mohamed Mursi was toppled.

Brotherhood official Gehad el-Haddad, who represented the movement in previous EU-facilitated talks, told Reuters the proposal had been made to envoy Bernardino Leon before a visit on Wednesday by EU foreign affairs chief Catherine Ashton.