A creeping Kremlin takeover of Crimea by ostensibly local ethnic Russian forces is more likely than a military assault on all or parts of Ukraine, U.S. and European intelligence officials and analysts said.
NATO and the Obama administration made a plea for keeping post-revolutionary Ukraine in one piece as tensions mounted in the Crimea and the Kremlin ordered a test of combat readiness of nearby Russian military units.
Syria’s opposition suspended its pledge to attend this week’s peace talks in Switzerland after the United Nations invited Iran, jeopardizing the latest attempt to end a war that’s killed more than 100,000 people.
Ukraine’s opposition vowed to keep up street protests against President Viktor Yanukovych after he sought to calm anger at a $15 billion Russian bailout by pledging to raise wages before his 2015 re-election bid.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel gained a tailwind in her bid to win a third term as her Bavarian ally won a regional election, drubbing the opposition Social Democrats seven days before the national vote.