Obama seeks to increase pressure on Russia

Monday, January 26, 2015
US President Barack Obama and Indian PM Narendra Modi giving out statement
during the joint press interaction in New Delhi
[PHOTO: Special Arrangements] 

New Delhi: U.S. President Barack Obama says the United States is considering all options short of military action to turn up the pressure on Russia after Moscow-backed separatists launched a new offensive in eastern Ukraine.

Obama spoke in New Delhi on January 25, a day after rocket attacks blamed on the rebels killed 30 people and wounded dozens more in the strategic Donetsk region port city of Mariupol.

Obama said he would "look at all additional options that are available to us short of military confrontation and try to address this issue. And we will be in close consultation with our international partners, particularly European partners."

The European Union called an emergency meeting of its foreign ministers on January 29 to discuss the situation.

The United States and EU have imposed sanctions on Russia over its seizure of Crimea from Ukraine last March and its support for the separatists who hold parts of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions.

The rocket attacks on Mariupol came a day after the senior separatist leader in Donetsk said rebels would seek to take control of the entire province and would no longer initiate peace talks with Kyiv.

The conflict has killed 5,000 people since April.

Copyright (c) 2015. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.
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