U.S. is ‘Appalled’ by Deadly Violence in Ukraine, but No Action is Announced
Posted: February 19, 2014 Filed under: U.S. News, War Room | Tags: Jay Carney, Joe Biden, KIEV, Minister for Foreign Affairs (Sweden), Ukraine, Viktor Yanukovych, White House
At least 13 killed in Ukraine protests: Violent clashes between hard-line protesters and police erupted Tuesday in Kiev, the Ukrainian capital, after more than a week of relative calm, leaving at least 13 people dead and many more wounded.
Anne Gearan writes: The United States condemned an explosion of street violence in Ukraine that killed at least 15 people Tuesday and said the government bears primary responsibility for restoring calm.
Vice President Biden called Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich to express what the White House termed “grave concern,” and called on the embattled leader to pull back government forces after a day of chaotic street clashes and immediately resume political discussions with opponents.
Biden “made clear that the United States condemns violence by any side, but that the government bears special responsibility to de-escalate the situation,” a White House statement said.
White House press secretary Jay Carney said the Obama administration is “appalled” by the violent crackdown on anti-government protesters in the Ukrainian capital.
Washington announced no specific new action, but U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Geoffrey Pyatt threatened both sides with sanctions.
“We believe Ukraine’s crisis can still be solved via dialogue, but those on both sides who fuel violence will open themselves to sanctions,” Pyatt said on Twitter, in both English and Russian.
Carney urged Yanukovych to resume a political discussion with opposition leaders as police and protesters clashed in the worst day of violence since opposition supporters set up camp in Kiev’s Independence Square in November.
“We continue to condemn street violence and excessive use of force by either side. Force will not resolve the crisis,” Carney said.
Pyatt retweeted an appeal to Yanukovych by Swedish Foreign Minister and former Balkan peace negotiator Carl Bildt…
The Washington Post