X Close

World

Published: Friday March 21, 2014 MYT 10:15:02 PM
Updated: Friday March 21, 2014 MYT 10:15:02 PM

U.N.'s Ban calls for urgent Russia-Ukraine talks

KIEV (Reuters) - U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon urged Ukraine and Russia on Friday to meet for talks to prevent the crisis between them becoming "uncontrollable" and spreading beyond the region.

"What is important at this time is for Ukrainian and Russian authorities to sit down together and engage in direct and constructive dialogue," Ban said in the Ukrainian capital Kiev after meeting acting President Oleksander Turchinov.

His visit follows a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow on Thursday, where he also called for dialogue and restraint after Russia's annexation of Ukraine's Russian-majority region of Crimea. This has brought about the worst confrontation between Moscow and the West since the Cold War.

In Kiev, Ban said the longer peaceful dialogue was delayed, "the greater risk there will be of uncontrollable situations beyond these two countries and beyond the region."

Turchinov said Ukraine was willing to hold talks, but it would never accept the annexation of Crimea.

"We stand ready to begin negotiations with Russia in any kind of format, but the main topic ... should be the full withdrawal of Russian troops from Ukrainian territory," he said at a joint press conference with Ban after their meeting.

Earlier in the day, in defiance of these sentiments and Western leaders who say the Black Sea peninsula remains part of Ukraine, Putin signed legislation that completed the process of absorbing Crimea into Russia.

(Reporting by Pavel Polityuk, Writing by Alessandra Prentice, Editing by Alissa de Carbonnel and Mark Heinrich)

advertisement

  1. Betong blast: Car bomb kills three, Malaysian among 36 injured in southern Thailand
  2. Selangor MB crisis: Hadi wants Khalid to continue as Mentri Besar
  3. 2014: A tragic year for aviation
  4. International community in awe of PM’s handling of MH17 tragedy
  5. Boy leaves a stink on board flight
  6. Experts: Get set for an acute water shortage
  7. Missing Air Algerie flight reported crashed
  8. Search for missing Air Algerie plane carrying 116 people
  9. Air Algerie loses contact with plane over west Africa
  10. US teenager who was circling globe in plane dies in crash

advertisement

advertisement