KIEV, Ukraine, April 9 (UPI) -- British Foreign Secretary William Hague cautioned Russia on Tuesday that continued escalation of the conflict in Ukraine will be met by additional sanctions.
Those sanctions, he told the House of Commons, will strive to "reduce European dependence on Russian gas."
Hague condemned the recent unrest in eastern Ukraine, "which bears all the hallmarks of a Russian strategy to destabilise Ukraine."
He warned Russia against further escalation: "Russia should be clear that the UK will consider any armed Russian presence in eastern Ukraine as further and deliberate escalation."
British Ambassador to Ukraine Simon Smith reiterated Hague's message Wednesday in a speech delivered in Kiev. The ambassador urged Russia not to intervene militarily in eastern Ukraine. If it failed to de-escalate the crisis, the British government would consider additional sanctions against Russia.
[British Government] [Interfax Ukraine News Agency]