Britain, Germany commit to impose costs on Russia if it reneges on Ukraine agreement

U.S. President Barack Obama spoke with British Prime Minister David Cameron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Thursday regarding the situation in Ukraine and the necessity that Russia honor its agreement to de-escalate the crisis.
By JC Finley   |   April 18, 2014 at 3:53 PM   |   Comments

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WASHINGTON, April 18 (UPI) -- The leaders of Britain and Germany expressed their commitment to Ukraine by promising U.S. President Barack Obama on Thursday that they would impose costs on Russia if it fails to abide by the de-escalation agreement reached Thursday in Geneva.

British Prime Minister David Cameron spoke by phone with Obama about the situation in Ukraine and the role Russia must play to defuse the crisis. If Russia fails to take "immediate, concrete actions," the White House reported that "The President and Prime Minister agreed that the United States and Europe are prepared to take further measures to impose costs on Russia ..."

In a similar call with German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Thursday, the two leaders expressed concern about the unrest in eastern Ukraine, applauded Ukraine's "constructive" actions, and discussed the need for Russia to de-escalate the crisis.

Those actions, the White House said, included requiring Russia to use "its influence over the irregular forces in eastern Ukraine to get them to lay down their arms and leave the buildings they have seized." Should Russia fall short of its promises made Thursday, the leaders agreed "further measures" against Russia would be taken.

Under the terms of the agreement, all parties agreed to cease violent and provocative actions, disband all illegal armed groups, and that all occupants of seized buildings must disarm and depart -- and will be granted amnesty.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry cautioned Russia directly, telling Foreign Minister Lavrov on Thursday that Russia must honor its commitment to the de-escalation agreement.

[White House]

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