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Ukraine Situation 'Worse and Worse,' Peskov Says

Published: May 5, 2014 (Issue # 1808)



  • A memorial at the House of Trade Unions in Odessa on May 3.
    Photo: Vadim Ghirda / AP

Amid calls to send Russian troops to quell violence in Ukraine's east, President Vladimir Putin is monitoring the situation closely and holding meetings and calls with relevant officials day and night, his spokesman said Sunday.

"We believe we should have a common interpretation of what is happening in Ukraine, but unfortunately we do not see that Europe and the U.S. are sane in their assessments," Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told The St. Petersburg Times in a phone interview.

"Russia is trying to achieve tangible results as we saw in the case of the release of OSCE observers, but despite our efforts, the situation there is only getting worse," he said.

Last week, Putin sent his envoy Vladimir Lukin to the city of Slovyansk, a stronghold of pro-Russian unrest in Ukraine's east, to help negotiate the release of 12 European military observers on Saturday.

As violence and chaos spread throughout Ukraine's restive southeast over the weekend, claiming at least 42 lives in the Black Sea city of Odessa, Russian lawmakers and authorities lashed out at Ukraine's authorities in Kiev and what they described as their puppet masters in the West.

The Kremlin has accused the Ukrainian government and the West of provoking the conflict in Odessa, while authorities in Kiev said the unrest was orchestrated by Russian security forces.

Sergei Mironov, leader of the A Just Russia Party, one of four parties elected to the State Duma, called for Russian troops to cross the border with Ukraine.

"Fascist scoundrels must be crushed in their own nests! We need to get troops there to defend our brothers and stop banderite fascists," said Mironov, who had been included on the European Union's list of sanctioned Russian individuals last week, wrote on Twitter.

Mironov was not available to comment on his statements on Sunday.

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