Ukraine announced a week-long unilateral cease-fire in its easternmost regions after the U.S. imposed sanctions on people linked to the insurgency and accused Russia of providing new military aid to separatists.
Russian President Vladimir Putin put more than 65,000 troops in the country’s central region on combat alert and ordered them to take part in a drill a day after Ukraine called a cease-fire that seeks to quell violence in the east.
Russia dismissed Ukraine’s declaration of a week-long cease-fire as an “ultimatum” and the U.S. imposed sanctions on people linked to the insurgency, accusing the government in Moscow of aiding separatists.
When Russian President Vladimir Putin travels to China next week chasing a long-term natural-gas supply deal, he’ll be joined by at least two businessmen sanctioned by the U.S. amid tensions over Ukraine.
President Vladimir Putin wants to safeguard the closer ties achieved with the U.S. under Dmitry Medvedev and predicts progress in talks on a planned missile shield in Europe after the November U.S. election, Putin’s foreign policy aide said.