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AT FIRST sight, Vladimir Putin’s assertion of Russia’s power and influence in Crimea has been a neat operation with low costs. Moscow’s aggression can even look like a nice little earner. While the EU, US and IMF offer aid to Ukraine, Russia gets to keep the undisbursed $12bn (£7.2bn) of its $15bn soft loan to [...]
FOREIGN secretary William Hague issued a stark message to Russia yesterday, warning there is a “great danger of a shooting conflict” if Putin moves troops out of Crimea and into mainland Ukraine. Hague reiterated the threat of UK sanctions against President Putin’s nation after armed personnel carriers were seen rolling into the country on Saturday. [...]
BARACK Obama issued a stark message to President Putin yesterday, warning that Russia’s attempts to legitimise military intervention in Crimea are fooling nobody. The US President all-but accused Putin of violating international law, while US secretary of state John Kerry reiterated the threat of economic sanctions against the country if Putin does not withdraw his [...]
It seems Vladimir Putin, upon whom everyone’s been keeping more than half an eye, is backing off. Following the beating the Russian stock market and currency took yesterday, the Russian leader's been speaking at a news conference. He told reporters this morning that there’s no – current – need for military force in Ukraine, that [...]
Russian President Vladimir Putin has defended a planned price rises for Ukraine by state-owned Russian energy giant Gazprom. Speaking to a press conference President Putin said: They failed to pay off the debt, I think it's $1.5bn as of today, and if they don't pay for February it's going to be $2bn. So if you [...]
President Putin, who’s currently speaking at a news conference, has said there’s no need to send troops into Ukraine now, but that Russia still "has that option". Deploying armed forces is, he said, would only be done in an extreme case. "So the tense situation in Crimea related to the possibility of use of force [...]
IT’S NOT just about the Crimea. Attention has naturally turned to Russia’s immediate strategic interest in Sevastopol. But the assumption that this marks the limit of Vladimir Putin’s ambition is a dangerous miscalculation. Putin’s trademark brand of Russian nationalism makes control of Kiev non-negotiable. Without it he is just another thug. But for deep cultural [...]
US SECRETARY of state John Kerry tends to reveal more than he ought to. In response to the Russian takeover of Crimea, he blustered, “you just don’t in the twenty-first century behave in a nineteenth-century fashion by invading another country,” as though the laws of human nature and geopolitics have been recently improved upon. In [...]
AS ITS currency collapses, protests flare up in Crimea, and Russia flexes its muscles on the doorstep, those in the West claiming triumph in Ukraine should remember the story of King Pyrrhus of Epirus. In 279 BC, this scourge of the Romans managed to best them at the Battle of Asculum, but at tremendous cost. [...]
CHAOS in Kiev must feel uncomfortably close to Russian President Vladimir Putin. The Ukrainian parliament yesterday annulled laws that sought to clear the streets of protesters against Ukraine’s increasingly authoritarian pro-Russian President Viktor Yanukovych. Ukraine’s prime minister and government have quit, and the country stands perilously on the edge of deeper conflict – prompted initially [...]
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