Home > News > World
Thursday May 8, 2014 MYT 3:50:02 PM
Thursday May 8, 2014 MYT 3:51:03 PM
TBILISI (Reuters) - British foreign minister William Hague said on Thursday there was no sign of Russia withdrawing troops from the Ukrainian border and urged pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine not to hold a planned independence referendum.
Russian President Vladimir Putin called on the separatists on Wednesday to postpone the vote, scheduled for Sunday, and announced he had pulled forces back from the border.
In comments during a visit to Georgia that were in line with the views of NATO, the Pentagon and the White House, Hague cast doubt on Putin's statement about the troop withdrawal.
"We haven't seen any evidence of any Russian forces being withdrawn from the areas where they have been stationed in recent weeks. They remain large, near the eastern borders of Ukraine," he told a news conference in Tbilisi, the former Soviet republic's capital.
Asked about Putin's call for the independence vote to be postponed, Hague said: "I hope that those in Donetsk and in other areas who have been planning so-called referendums will take notice of those words and will not hold such referendums."
Hague also made clear that sanctions on Russia, beyond those already imposed by the United States and the European Union, could still be introduced.
"We have been preparing sanctions and we continue to prepare sanctions, including more far-reaching sanctions if they are necessary. The reaction of the European Union countries to these statements will depend on the course of events in the coming days," he said.
(Reporting by Margarita Antidze, Writing by Nigel Stephenson, Editing by Timothy Heritage)
Bookkeeper of Auschwitz says he can only ask God for forgiveness
Striking ferry workers to ease blockade of Calais port
Greece's Tsipras digs in against bailout
U.S. NSA also spied on several German ministers, media reports say
Celebrate Raya in style with GEMFIVE
The 3 unexpected life events that leave us in debt
It all started with a fan club
Argentina odds-on favourites to lift Copa America
Apple assessing next steps after e-books antitrust ruling
Copyright © 1995-2015 Star Media Group Berhad (ROC 10894D)(Formerly known as Star Publications (Malaysia) Berhad)