KIEV/DONETSK Ukraine (Reuters) – Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko called an emergency meeting of his security chiefs for Tuesday to discuss new ways of dealing with the separatist challenge in the east after rebel elections that were denounced by Kiev and the West.
The rogue votes, which Kiev says Russia encouraged, could create a new “frozen conflict” in post-Soviet Europe and further threaten the territorial unity of Ukraine, which lost control of its Crimean peninsula in March when it was annexed by Russia.
DONETSK, Ukraine, Nov 3 (Reuters) – Pro-Russian separatists
in Ukraine named a leader of their breakaway republic on Monday
after a weekend election which was denounced by Kiev and the
West and further deepened a standoff with Russia over the future
of the former Soviet state.
Organisers of the vote said that Alexander Zakharchenko, a
38-year-old former mining electrician, had easily won election
as head of the “Donetsk People’s Republic”, an entity proclaimed
by armed rebels in the days after they seized key buildings in
cities of Ukraine’s Russian-speaking east last April.
DONETSK Ukraine (Reuters) – Pro-Russian rebels voted to set up a separatist leadership in eastern Ukraine on Sunday, aiming to take the war-torn region closer to Russia and defying Kiev and the West, as shelling continued across the territory.
The United States and European Union have denounced the vote as illegitimate, which is sure to stoke tensions further between the West and Russia.
DONETSK Ukraine (Reuters) – Pro-Russian separatists will vote to set up a breakaway regional leadership in eastern Ukraine on Sunday aiming to take their war-torn region closer to Russia and defying Kiev and the West as the big guns still boom across the territory.
The United States and European Union have denounced as illegitimate the vote which is sure too to stoke tensions further between the West and Russia.
DONETSK, Ukraine, Oct 30 (Reuters) – On a campaign trip, the
leader of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic lit
candles at a Russian Orthodox Church and kissed icons of Jesus
and the Virgin Mary before dashing off to meet about 100 voters
in a local factory.
There, the barrel-chested 38-year-old former mine
electrician Alexander Zakharchenko assured voters that he wanted
pensions to be “higher than in Poland”. The elderly should have
enough money to “travel to Australia at least once a year to
shoot a dozen kangaroos on Safari”, he said.
VOLNOVAKHA Ukraine (Reuters) – Voters in eastern Ukraine had one thing on their mind as they voted in Sunday’s parliamentary election: an end to months of conflict between pro-Russian separatists and government forces.
“Peace is the only thing people want here,” said a 57-year-old woman, who gave her name only as Yelena, after voting in Volnovakha, in territory held by Kiev’s troops about 50 km (30 miles) south of the rebel stronghold of Donetsk.
NOVOTROITSKE Ukraine (Reuters) – Standing at the village polling station where she will oversee Ukraine’s parliamentary election on Sunday, Irina Sobko points across a field of wilted sunflowers to a town controlled by Russian-backed rebels where she says there won’t be any voting.
“We’re Ukraine’s last polling station, the front line, so to speak,” said Sobko, 53, who is on the election committee at one of three polling stations in the pro-Kiev village of Novotroitske in eastern Ukraine.
SPARTAK, Ukraine, Oct 21 (Reuters) – Waiting for a lull in
fighting between Ukrainian troops and pro-Russian rebels,
Nikolai Batyshchev ventures out with his chainsaw and
wheelbarrow to collect firewood to fend off the damp autumn
Left without natural gas or power due to fighting over
nearby Donetsk airport, Batyshchev and his neighbours are
guarding not only against mortar bombs that have pounded their
village of Spartak, but also the approaching Ukrainian winter.
MOSCOW, Oct 17 (Reuters) – At the height of the uprising by
pro-Russian rebels in eastern Ukraine this summer, a handful of
human rights workers recorded that Russian soldiers had been
killed on the battlefield, even though the Kremlin said its
troops were never there.
It was typical work for activists from the group Memorial,
which has emerged since the fall of the Soviet Union as Russia’s
most important human rights organisation mainly by taking notes.
MOSCOW (Reuters) – Former Soviet president Mikhail Gorbachev has warned Western leaders and Russian President Vladimir Putin against dragging the world into a new version of the Cold War he helped to end a quarter of a century ago.
Gorbachev, recently in hospital, voiced his disquiet in a newspaper interview at the current standoff over Ukraine, which has prompted the United States and European Union to impose sanctions on Russia, and Moscow to retaliate by banning most Western food imports.