03:37 GMT +327 March 2017
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    Ukrainian tanks stand in the yard of an apartment block in Avdiivka, eastern Ukraine

    Putin Explains Reasons Behind Ukraine Crisis Aggravation

    © AP Photo/ Evgeniy Maloletka
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    Russian President Vladimir Putin explained three reasons behind the aggravation of the Ukrainian crisis.

    He said that first of all Kiev needs financial assistance and attempts to present itself as a "victim," especially in the eyes of the European Union.

    "The first reason is that the Ukrainian leadership needs money. And it is better to ask the EU, European states, the US and international institutes for money presenting itself as a victim of aggression," Putin explained.

    Putin also said that while Ukraine supported a "certain female candidate" in the 2016 US presidential election, and now Kiev attempts to mend ties with the new US administration amid the resumed fighting in eastern Ukraine.

    "During the pre-election campaign in the United States, current Ukrainian authorities one-sidedly supported one of the candidates. Moreover, some tycoons financed this female candidate (to be precise) supposedly with the approval of the political leadership," Putin continued.

    According to Putin, "now they need to mend ties with the current US administration amid a conflict… It's always easier to drag the current [US] administration in solving Ukrainian problems and establish a dialogue this way."

    Moreover, Ukrainian authorities attempt to fight opposition, distracting attention from this aim by the escalation of the situation in Donbass, Putin said.

    "The third reason [for the resumed fighting in Donbass] is an internal one. Amid [Kiev's] obvious failures in its social and economic policies, [Ukrainian] opposition intensified its activity. It should be hushed up by mobilizing the population around the acting leadership. It's easier to achieve this goal amid the resuming of a conflict," Putin said.

    However, Putin said that he hoped that common sense will prevail and Kiev will not let the "worst scenario" unfold in the southeast of Ukraine.

    The Russian president said that that "Ukrainian authorities are not ready to abide by the Minsk agreements and are searching for a pretext in order not to implement them."

    Putin also said that "as for the escalation [in Donbass], our position is well-known: it was provoked by the Ukrainian side. Last Friday, the fighting began. On Sunday, the so-called Ukrainian volunteer battalions gained control over one of the strongholds of the opposition and entered territory controlled by militia. On Sunday, their attack was repelled."

    The situation near the industrial town of Avdiivka and neighboring Yasynuvata has been tense for several days, with civilians being deprived of running water, central heating and electricity. The Ukrainian forces and Donbass militia are accusing each other of being responsible for escalation of fighting.

    On Monday, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko had to interrupt his visit to Germany due to the escalation of the security situation on the line of contact in eastern Ukraine. He also charged his aides with calling for the extraordinary session of the Trilateral Contact Group on Ukraine to discuss the situation.

    Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Tuesday that Moscow had reliable data that the Ukrainian independent armed groups, supported by the Ukrainian Armed Forces' artillery, were behind the attack on Avdiivka.

    Related:

    Tusk Urges Russia to Influence Donbass Militia to Help End Violence in Avdiivka
    Ukrainian Army Concentrates Troops Near Avdiivka for Offensive - DPR
    UNICEF: Fierce Fighting in Ukraine’s Avdiivka Leaves 2,500 Children With No Heat
    Tags:
    Vladimir Putin, Avdiivka, Donbass, United States, Ukraine
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    • sapper
      As usual Mr Putin with his finger on the pulse!!!
    • avatar
      ViTran
      EU have not Given Nazi Kiev Ukraine that 100 bn Euros promised since 2014 ... and EU has not open its doors to 40 Million Nazi Kiev Ukrainians ...

      problem solved
    • Mikhas
      It seems that Trump really didn't want to have any of that mess and he will probably take the first best opportunity to drop it on Russia's lap to take care of.

      And why not? With a little bit of political assistance, I'm sure Russia wont mind and besides, nobody knows these Nazi drama queens better than the Russians. Time for them to face reality and grow up.
    • avatar
      ViTran
      Minsk 2.0, Dead ... Donbas will Never Forgive NAZI's in Kiev Ukraine
    • avatar
      ViTranin reply toMikhas(Show commentHide comment)
      Mikhas, RF Does Not Need or Want NAZI Kiev Ukraine ... Suggest Give it to EU .... They Like Naz's ...
    • Angus Gallagher
      President Putin is right. This is Kiev making a play for EU support. It's an intolerable provocation.
    • avatar
      Austrian Schoolin reply toMikhas(Show commentHide comment)
      Mikhas, Some of the "Nazi drama queens will have to be dealt with, either in trials or in the good old way - surprise in the neck.
    • avatar
      Austrian School
      These tanks in the town, are these defectors? They look as if they hadn't been used and parked in the scrap yard.
    • avatar
      ivanwa88
      Although official numbers have been hushed reports circulating indicate that Nazi battalions who launched attacks had a 50% casualty rate which if you can image how motivated Donbass militia would be when realizing there facing Nazi battalions.

      That would indicate around 800 killed or wounded, not sure those Battalions will ever fight again.
    • avatar
      ivanwa88
      P.S. Pretty sure Russia will federalize Ukraine into 6 states with 3 states going to Poland and Hungary who lost territory in WW2.

      Lugansk and Donbass plus a further territory on the border will be run by Russia in joint cooperative ventures.
      Poland and Hungary will only get certain land back if they sign a decree to never place missiles or long range radar except short range air defence that Russia will provide in Buk and or Pantsir on a contra deal.
      Plus the scrapping of the Aegis radar complex in Poland.
    • avatar
      Walter Wolfin reply toivanwa88(Show commentHide comment)
      ivanwa88, If Polaks gained Lviv, they would be asked for Szczecin returned to Germany. If this logic does not work, nothing is going to change before WW3.
      Russia gave independence to all her republics and whole East Europe (since the west called those occupied). Even after that US/EU was trying to liberate Russia from Russians. But what was the logic for West to protect former Soviet republics from any internal splitting? F.i. Georgia and Ukraine were awarded with territories by Stalin and Khrushchev. The logic was that the anti-Russian states were considered the stronger the better, not wealthier but more militarized and aggressive.
      I would like to see counter-arguments.
    • avatar
      ivanwa88
      Walter Wolf historic debate aside the issue is of a country blighted with horrendous debt that has been plundered by US and Ukrainian oligarch.
      The point made is to meet a feasible long term strategy to recover the country whilst the carrot for Poland and Hungary is they get back some old territory lost in history's journey of time.
      Without that carrot what would be the point Russia does not want or can afford to take full responsibility for the vast nation it is a sensible approach to carve it up with Poland and Hungary taking pretty much all of west Ukraine which would be a sensible chunk for them to develop.
      The rest gives Russia border protection for which they would gladly invest in east Ukraine to get it back to the point that its self sufficient and contributing to Russia's strength of nation.
      10-15 years of proper Industrial and farming investment should see east Ukraine which I would rather refer to as Eastern Russoland became sustainable and indeed profitable and no longer a burden on Russian tax payers.

      Everything else in terms to your points I would deem inconsequential and thus relatively unimportant.
      This issue is an extremely serious and dramatic problem that needs a logical process manageable for those with a interest in that nation.
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