EU Foreign Affairs Council meets to discuss Ukraine situation

The European Union's Foreign Affairs Council met Monday in Luxembourg to discuss the situation in Ukraine. The Council condemned Russian attempts to destabilize Ukraine and urged constructive dialogue between Russia and Ukraine to achieve a peaceful solution to the crisis.
By JC Finley  |  April 15, 2014 at 1:59 PM
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LUXEMBOURG , April 15 (UPI) -- The European Union Foreign Affairs Council convened on Monday in Luxembourg to discuss a range of issues, including the crisis in Ukraine.

The Council issued its conclusions, condemning attempts to destabilize Ukraine and urging constructive dialogue to achieve a peaceful solution to the crisis.

With Russian troops assembled near Ukraine's border, the EU "demands Russia to call back its troops... and immediately withdraw the mandate of the Federation Council to use force on Ukrainian soil."

In March, Russia announced it had annexed Ukraine's Crimea region. "The EU reiterates its strong condemnation of the illegal annexation of Crimea and Sevastopol to the Russian Federation and will not recognise it," the Council stated Monday.

Despite the EU's condemnation of Russian actions in Ukraine, the Council urged Russia and Ukraine to engage "in a meaningful dialogue through the establishment of a multilateral mechanism."

Four-party talks scheduled for April 17 will bring together the EU, Russia, Ukraine, and the U.S. to discuss steps toward deescalation of the crisis in Ukraine.

The Council warned that should Russia continue its destabilizing actions in Ukraine, it would incur "far reaching consequences for relations in a broad range of economic areas between the European Union and its Member States." The Council noted that the EU and member states were exploring "possible targeted measures... should events require."

The Council voiced its support for the Ukrainian political process as the government undertakes reforms and constitutional reform. The EU praised "the will of the Ukrainian government to implement its commitments to ensure the representative nature and inclusiveness of governmental structures, reflecting regional diversity, to ensure the full protection of the rights of persons belonging to national minorities, to investigate all human rights violations and acts of violence and to fight extremism."

[European Union]

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