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U.S. Vice President Joe Biden’s Visit to Kiev
U.S. Vice President Joe Biden landed at Borispol airport outside Kiev, Ukraine on Monday. According to Independent UK, the two day visit was centered on showing American support for the new Ukrainian government and to push for implementation of a diplomatic accord reached at the Geneva talks last week between Ukraine, the US, the European Union and Russia to de-escalate tensions.
U.S. Vice President Joe Biden is the highest-level US official to visit Ukraine since the crisis erupted. An official in his entourage said he “wanted to come to Kiev to send a very clear message of US support for Ukraine’s democracy, unity, sovereignty and territorial integrity.” The visit, according to the Washington Post, comes just four days after Russian and Ukrainian officials agreed at the Geneva talks to defuse the standoff in the east. The April 17 Geneva accord stipulated an immediate end to the violence in eastern Ukraine and called on illegal armed groups to surrender their weapons and to leave official buildings, according to BBC News.
Acting President Oleksandr Turchynov said in a statement on the parliament website, with eastern Ukraine in control of “terrorists” supported by Russia, the separatists have “crossed the line” after bodies of a local lawmaker and a member of the Batkivshchyna party were found. It has been reported that the Pro-Russian forces who took over buildings in eastern Ukrainian cities have said that they are not bound by the Geneva deal.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has warned Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov that “there will be consequences” if Russia does not act “over the next pivotal days” to restrain separatists in Ukraine.
Joe Biden told a group of prominent Ukrainians including confectionery magnate Petro Poroshenko, former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko and also former world boxing champion Vitali Klitschko, “The opportunity to generate a united Ukraine, getting it right, is within your grasp,” the Vice President said according to Bloomberg News that, “And we want to be your partner and friend in the project. We want to assist.”
U.S. Vice President Joe Biden’s office said in a statement that The U.S. offered Ukraine $50 million in aid to help it pursue political and economic changes to stabilize its government, including $11.4 million for a May 25 presidential election that Joe Biden said “may be the most important election” to date for the country of 45 million people on the Black Sea, according to a report by Bloomberg News.
Image Credit: www.breakingnews.comU.S. Vice President Joe Biden's Visit to Kiev by Jaan