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Author Topic: Obama, Poroshenko to meet as peace deal hopes rise  (Read 445 times)

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Obama, Poroshenko to meet as peace deal hopes rise
« on: September 18, 2014, 09:28:15 AM »
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Ukraine's leader Petro Poroshenko will meet with US President Barack Obama Thursday, amid hopes Kiev's conflict with pro-Russian rebels may end after Moscow hailed an offer of self-rule for the separatists.


The autonomy offer was drawn up under a peace plan backed by both Kiev and Moscow 12 days ago that has eased -- but not halted -- deadly violence around insurgent strongholds in eastern Ukraine.

Moscow, echoing comments by both Washington and the European Union, said it was a "step in the right direction" towards ending a conflict that has killed almost 2,900 people and sent East-West tensions spiralling.

"All of this lays the foundation for the launch of a substantial constitutional process in Ukraine including the start of dialogue with a view to facilitating national reconciliation and agreement in the country," the Russian foreign ministry said.

Ukraine's lawmakers unanimously approved the "regional status" law on Tuesday just moments before ratifying a landmark EU pact that steers Ukraine away from Russia's sphere of influence.

President Poroshenko will cast Russia as a global menace Thursday when he meets Obama in Washington, in the hope of winning a "special status" guaranteeing his troubled nation's security.

It is the pro-West president's first tour of the White House since his May election.


Yet Obama has been saddled with too many simultaneous crises to draw the United States into a military standoff with a nuclear-armed Russia over a country with which it is sympathetic but is not part of its strategic concerns.

"We are not going to be getting into a military excursion in Ukraine," Obama told US television just days after Russia completed its annexation of Ukraine's Black Sea peninsula of Crimea in March.


 

 

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