Tuesday

17th Oct 2017

Ukraine says Russian invasion has begun

Ukrainian president Petro Poroshenko has said Russian forces have invaded his country, with Kiev calling for an emergency EU and UN meeting.

Ditching a planned trip to Turkey on Thursday (26 August), Poroshenko in a TV address in the rain in front of his jet said that: “I have made a decision to cancel my working visit … due to a sharp aggravation of the situation in the Donetsk region [in east Ukraine], particularly in Amvrosiivka and Starobeshevo, as Russian troops have actually been introduced into Ukraine”.

Thank you for reading EUobserver!

Subscribe now for a 30 day free trial.

  1. €150 per year
  2. or €15 per month
  3. Cancel anytime

EUobserver is an independent, not-for-profit news organization that publishes daily news reports, analysis, and investigations from Brussels and the EU member states. We are an indispensable news source for anyone who wants to know what is going on in the EU.

We are mainly funded by advertising and subscription revenues. As advertising revenues are falling fast, we depend on subscription revenues to support our journalism.

For group, corporate or student subscriptions, please contact us. See also our full Terms of Use.

If you already have an account click here to login.

  • Poroshenko: 'Russian troops have actually been introduced into Ukraine' (Photo: president.gov.ua)

He noted that he will convene a special meeting of Ukraine's security council, the NSDC.

He also called for snap talks by the UN Security Council, noting: “The world must provide an assessment of the sharp aggravation of the situation”.

Ukraine’s prime minister, Aresniy Yatsenyuk, in a separate TV statement, said: “It’s quite difficult for us to fight with Russia and its army. We urge the EU and the US to freeze all Russian assets until Russia pulls back its forces”.

Ukraine’s ambassador to the EU, Konstantin Yeliseyev, noted in a communique that EU leaders at their summit on Saturday in Brussels should devote a special session to Ukraine, adding: “Solidarity … should materialise in further resolute significant sanctions [against Russia] and large-scale military and technical assistance to Ukraine”.

Russian forces already invaded Ukraine when Russia seized Crimea in March.

The EU and the US imposed economic sanctions on Russia over Crimea and over its supply of weapons and irregular fighters to pro-Russia rebels in east Ukraine over the past five months.

But Kiev, Washington, and some EU capitals said on Thursday that Russia crossed a new line when its soldiers overtly took part in attacks against government forces in south-east Ukraine.

“We consider this as a real invasion,” a Ukrainian diplomat told EUobserver.

A diplomat from one eastern European EU country said: “Now there is a direct Russian military invasion, so the EU should react accordingly. The possibility of further sanctions will be discussed”.

Edgars Rinkevics, the foreign minister of Latvia, tweeted: “UN must react accordingly, this is war”.

For its part, the EU foreign service has said foreign ministers will hold talks on Ukraine at an informal meeting in Milan this weekend.

An EU diplomat noted that Poroshenko is due in Brussels on Saturday morning to meet with EU Council chief Herman Van Rompuy and European Commission head Jose Manuel Barroso in the margins of an EU summit devoted to filling the bloc’s top posts.

He added that EU leaders will discuss Ukraine on Saturday evening and that Poroshenko may be invited to join them depending how events unfold.

Meanwhile, Van Rompuy in his invitation letter to EU leaders said the second half of the summit will be in the presence of foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton to "discuss a number of pressing international issues."

In a separate move, the commission also on Thursday said it will pay EU producers of butter, skimmed milk powder, and selected cheeses to put excess stock into cold storage over the next three to seven months.

The decision comes after Russia imposed a ban on EU food imports earlier this month in retaliation at EU measures against its banks and energy firms.

The commission also said member states are due in October to file reports on how they would cope if Russia cuts off supplies of gas to EU customers via Ukraine in the coming winter.

Russia relaxes EU food ban, counts costs

Russia has said its ban on EU food imports will cost it “hundreds of billions of rubles”, while taking several items off the blacklist.

Opinion

EU can still end Rohingya ethnic cleansing

If European leaders speak and act now, there's a chance ethnic cleansing could end before the last Burmese Rohingya is killed, captured, or exiled.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. International Partnership for Human RightsEU Should Seek Concrete Commitments From Azerbaijan at Human Rights Dialogue
  2. European Jewish CongressEJC Calls for New Austrian Government to Exclude Extremist Freedom Party
  3. CES - Silicones EuropeIn Healthcare, Silicones Are the Frontrunner. And That's a Good Thing!
  4. EU2017EEEuropean Space Week 2017 in Tallinn from November 3-9. Register Now!
  5. European Entrepreneurs CEA-PMEMobiliseSME Exchange Programme Open Doors for 400 Companies Across Europe
  6. CECEE-Privacy Regulation – Hands off M2M Communication!
  7. ILGA-EuropeHealth4LGBTI: Reducing Health Inequalities Experienced by LGBTI People
  8. EU2017EEEHealth: A Tool for More Equal Health
  9. Mission of China to the EUChina-EU Tourism a Key Driver for Job Creation and Enhanced Competitiveness
  10. CECENon-Harmonised Homologation of Mobile Machinery Costs € 90 Million per Year
  11. ILGA-EuropeMass Detention of Azeri LGBTI People - the LGBTI Community Urgently Needs Your Support
  12. European Free AllianceCatalans Have Won the Right to Have an Independent State

Latest News

  1. Malta shocked after car bomb kills crusading journalist
  2. Spanish and Catalan leaders continue stand-off
  3. May pleads for more as EU makes Brexit gesture
  4. EU united in backing Iran deal, after Trump criticisms
  5. 'Think of the patients!' cry warring EMA-host cities
  6. In Iceland: Europe woos Arctic allies
  7. Austrian voters reject liberal pro-EU status quo
  8. Turkey urges EU not to break off ties