[WSF-Discuss] Tensions Mount further and more Violence in Parts of Ukraine: No Military Intervention by Russia (or NATO), for the time being at least

Sukla Sen sukla.sen at gmail.com
Wed May 7 06:44:51 CDT 2014


Report: 5 activists killed in Ukraine clashesViolence comes amid escalation
of tensions
Author: By Arwa Damon, Lena Kashkarova and Laura Smith-Spark CNN
Published On: May 07 2014 03:19:09 AM CDT   Updated  26 m

MARIUPOL, Ukraine (CNN) -

 Five pro-Russian activists were killed overnight when Ukrainian forces
attacked barricades on the outskirts of Ukraine's southeastern city of
Mariupol, a spokeswoman for the pro-Russian camp said Wednesday.

Fifteen other activists were detained by Ukrainian forces, Irina Voropaeva

The violence comes amid an escalation of tensions as Ukrainian forces seek
to regain control of some of the administrative buildings seized by
pro-Russian separatists in a swath of the country's south and east.

The activists briefly abandoned the Mariupol City Council building,
according to Voropaeva.

But the security forces stayed only briefly in the building, saying they
had been ordered to leave.

The activists re-entered and Russian and regional flags went back up, to
the cheers of the crowd outside.

Elsewhere in the volatile Donetsk region, an uneasy standoff continued
Wednesday between the Ukrainian military and the separatists.

Both sides clashed at the rebel stronghold of Slovyansk on Monday.
Ukraine's security services said 30 "heavily armed" militants had been
killed in recent days as part of the "anti-terrorist" operation in the area.

As the tensions rise, uncertainty reigns.

The eastern Donetsk and Luhansk regions say they'll hold a referendum on
autonomy on Sunday, but there are no visible preparations for a vote.

Meanwhile, the interim government in Kiev plans to hold presidential
elections on May 25 -- but acknowledges it has lost control of part of the

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov on Tuesday said it would be
"unusual" to hold a presidential election in the country when the army was
being deployed against the population.

In what could be a sign of Moscow preparing to question the legitimacy of
the May 25 election if it is unhappy with the process, Lavrov said: "In the
situation where they use the army against their own population, it's quite

"This is not Afghanistan; this is a completely different situation," he
said, adding that constitutional reforms promised by Kiev's new leaders
would not be implemented in time for the vote.

Lavrov, speaking after a meeting of Council of Europe foreign ministers in
Austria, also ruled out holding a second international meeting in a bid to
defuse the crisis in Ukraine, saying that the provisions of a first
international pact signed in Geneva, Switzerland, last month had yet to be
put into force.

The agreement called on all parties to refrain from violence, as well as
saying illegal armed groups must disarm and vacate seized public buildings.

Kiev and many in the West believe that the separatists are backed by Moscow
and fear that Russian President Vladimir Putin is fomenting trouble to
increase his influence in the region.

Russia annexed Ukraine's southeastern Crimea region in March, following a
referendum staged while armed pro-Russian groups backed by Russian forces
controlled key infrastructure.

But Moscow says right-wing, ultranationalist groups are behind the violence
in Ukraine and says it has no direct influence over the pro-Russian groups.

The rising tensions could have an impact far beyond Ukraine's borders, NATO
Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen warned on Tuesday.

"Today we are facing the gravest crisis to European security since the end
of the Cold War," he told reporters.

"But this is not just about Ukraine. This crisis has serious implications
for the security and stability of the Euro-Atlantic area as a whole."



Peace Is Doable
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