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Dec 16, 2013

Russia eyes loan, gas deal to keep Ukraine in its orbit

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russia signaled on Monday it was about to agree a loan and gas deal with Ukraine to help Kiev stave off economic chaos and keep it in its former Soviet master’s orbit.

In Kiev, the opposition went ahead with preparations for another big rally for Tuesday against what they see as moves by President Viktor Yanukovich to sell out national interests to Russia after backing away from a landmark deal with the European Union that would have shifted their country westwards.

Dec 12, 2013

Russia makes new attempt to woo Ukraine, EU waits in wings

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russian President Vladimir Putin made a new attempt to woo Ukraine on Thursday after the European Union and United States stepped up efforts to pull Kiev out of its former Soviet master’s orbit.

A day after European and U.S. officials held talks with Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich in Kiev, Putin used a state of the nation address to tout the economic benefits of joining a customs union that he wants Ukraine to be part of.

Dec 11, 2013

Russian state TV waves the flag for Putin in Ukraine

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Ukraine is descending into anarchy and civil war. Economic collapse, even partition looms for a Russian ally enmeshed by a conspiracy involving the United States, the EU, Sweden, Poland, Lithuania. That at least is the view Russians might well get, watching state media coverage of events in Kiev.

Russian state media, the dominant force under Vladimir Putin’s presidency, has broadcast a consistent message of caution to the domestic audience and to millions across Ukraine who understand Russian and can receive Russian television.

Dec 9, 2013

Putin dissolves state news agency, tightens grip on Russia media

MOSCOW, Dec 9 (Reuters) – President Vladimir Putin tightened
his control over Russia’s media on Monday by dissolving the main
state news agency and replacing it with an organisation that is
to promote Moscow’s image abroad.

The move to abolish RIA Novosti and create a news agency to
be known as Rossiya Segodnya is the second in two weeks
strengthening Putin’s hold on the media as he tries to reassert
his authority after protests against his rule.

Dec 3, 2013

Protests show Putin the battle for Ukraine is not over

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Protests by hundreds of thousands of people in Ukraine against their leaders’ U-turn over Europe have sent a warning to Vladimir Putin that the battle over the former Soviet republic’s future is far from over.

For once, matters may be largely out of the Russian leader’s hands: he appears to have little left in his political armory to woo Ukraine, especially if the protesters oust President Viktor Yanukovich or persuade him to change tack again.

Nov 29, 2013

Ukraine holds key to Putin’s dream of a new union

MOSCOW, Nov 29 (Reuters) – Ukraine’s refusal to sign a trade
pact drawing it into Europe’s orbit marked a victory for
Vladimir Putin, winning him time to lure Kiev into a project for
a trade and political bloc stretching from the frontiers of
China to the edge of the EU.

The Russian president sees his “Eurasian Union”, in which
Ukraine would play a central role, as a future rival to China,
the United States and the European Union. Some say he sees it as
the president’s personal political legacy – a strong force
emerging from the ashes of the old Soviet Union.

Nov 22, 2013

Russia steals “Ukrainian bride” at the altar

MOSCOW/KIEV, Nov 22 (Reuters) – Ukraine’s abrupt decision to
return to Mother Russia’s bear hug after a flirtation with
western Europe can be traced back to a secretive meeting of
their two presidents two weeks ago.

The country of 46 million, squeezed between the European
Union and Russia, on Thursday froze plans to sign a trade pact
with the EU which would have marked a historic shift away from
its former Soviet masters in Moscow.

Nov 1, 2013

Russian PM plays down ‘gas war’ talk, warns Ukraine on EU

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said he saw no reason for Moscow to cut gas supplies to Ukraine over an unpaid bill for now, playing down talk of an imminent “gas war” that might disrupt flows to Europe.

In an interview with Reuters, he denied Russia’s demands for payment had anything to do with opposition to Ukraine signing agreements with the European Union this month which would mark a historic shift away from former imperial master Moscow.

Nov 1, 2013

Russian PM wants cheaper credit to stimulate economy

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russia must boost the flow of credit to businesses to promote an investment-led recovery but will not throw fiscal caution to the wind to overcome the drag on the economy from weak exports, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said.

In an interview with Reuters, the former president said he saw no contradiction between fiscal consolidation and economic development, and said the government would press on with privatization at the right price.

Nov 1, 2013

Russian PM sees Syria peace talks by end of year

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russia hopes an international peace conference on Syria will be held before the end of this year, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev said, despite reported differences with the United States over opposition representation.

He appealed to both sides in Syria’s civil war to compromise and criticized the opposition for demanding assurances of President Bashar al-Assad’s departure as a condition for the talks.

    • About Timothy

      "Timothy Heritage is Brussels Bureau Chief and European Affairs Editor, responsible for coverage of the European Union. He has previously been based in Moscow, Jerusalem, Paris, London, Warsaw and Belgrade, covering events ranging from the fall of Communism and conflict in the Balkans and Middle East to the euro zone debt crisis."
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