Crisis in Ukraine - March 14, 2014
EWI offers a daily situation report on Ukraine's unfolding crisis, featuring key developments and links to analytical pieces from foregin policy experts around the world.
- US Secretary of State John Kerry met with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov in London on Friday for six hours. Lavrov stated that Russia will "respect the will of the people of Crimea.” After the meeting, Lavrov called the talks “constructive” but stated that Russia and the U.S. did “not have a common vision” on the situation in Ukraine.
- Hundreds of pro-Russian and Kiev supporters clashed last night in the east Ukraine city of Donetsk in the worst display of violence since Ukraine President Viktor Yanukovych was ousted on February 22. One person died in the violence, and several people were injured.
- On Friday morning, trucks, troops and at least one armored personnel carrier (APC) were unloaded from a Russian warship, the Yamal 156, at Kazachaya Bay near Sevastopol in Crimea. The large landing ship can carry more than 300 troops and up to a dozen APCs.
- Senior U.S. officials report that Ukraine's interim government has appealed to the U.S. for military aid, including arms, ammunition and intelligence support. Wary of aggravating tensions with Russia, the Obama administration has agreed to send only military rations at this time.
- Russia's ambassador to the United Nations, Vitaly Churkin, told an emergency meeting of the Security Council that Moscow "does not want war" with Ukraine, as a direct response to a question posed by Ukraine's interim Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk.
- A draft resolution has been circulated in the UN Security Council concerning the referendum in Crimea, planned for Sunday. Sponsored by the U.S., the resolution would declare the referendum illegal. According to council diplomats, Russia has pledged to veto the resolution.
- The U.S. aid package to Ukraine stalled in the Senate on Thursday because of Republican opposition to the bill. In addition to opposing the IMF reforms tied to the aid package, some opponents, such as Senator Rand Paul (KY), also stated that the aid would indirectly benefit Russia because of the billions of dollars of debt Ukraine owes Russia. Some Republicans, however, support the bill, with Senator John McCain (AZ) harshly criticizing those in his party for their opposition to the proposed legislation. The bill will be taken up again when Congress reconvenes on March 24.
- Eight U.S. Senators, led by Senator John McCain (R-AZ), will travel to Ukraine this weekend to meet with the interim government.
- Leonid Kravchuk, Ukraine's first president (1991-1994), earlier this month denounced Russia's invasion of Ukraine, stating that Russia has violated the Budapest Memorandum and that “Ukraine has every reason to go to international arbitration." Kravchuk vowed that he and every Ukrainian citizen would take up arms to fight for their homeland against Russian aggression.
Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk addressed the UN Security Council on March 13 at its sixth urgent meeting on the crisis in Ukraine
The Editorial Board, “Fixing Ukraine’s Economy,” The New York Times, March 13, 2014.
Wei Zongyou, “Ukraine Crisis: Can China Be More Helpful?,” The Diplomat, March 14, 2014.
Jamila Trindle, “Cutting off your Nose,” Foreign Policy, March 13, 2014.
Alexander Motyl, “Why Ukraine Should Risk it All,” Foreign Policy, March 14, 2014.
Susan B. Glasser, “Putin on the Couch,” Politico, March 14, 2014.
Robert Kahn, “Sanctions: What’s Next?,” Council on Foreign Relations, March 13, 2014.
John J. Mearsheimer, “Getting Ukraine Wrong,” The New York Times, March 13, 2014.