03:45 GMT +324 March 2018
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    U.S. President Barack Obama and Ukraine's President Petro Poroshenko shake hands during the luncheon at the United Nations General Assembly in New York September 28, 2015

    Arms Over Armistice: Obama Vows to Back Belligerent Ukraine

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    In a controversial move, US President Barack Obama has assured Kiev that Washington will continue to support Ukraine, according to Svyatoslav Tsegolko, press secretary of the Ukrainian President.

    Ukraine's presidential press secretary Svyatoslav Tsegolko said on his Facebook page that US President Barack Obama had reaffirmed the White House's support for Ukraine and its efforts "to protect [its] territorial integrity and sovereignty".

    According to Tsegolko, the statement was made during Obama's meeting with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko on the sidelines of the 70th session of the UN General Assembly that is currently under way in New York.

    "During the talks, President Obama stressed that the United States will continue to support Ukraine, which is implementing reforms and seeks a diplomatic solution to the conflict", Tsegolko said.

    He added that Obama had reiterated his support for Poroshenko's efforts, which he said are aimed at protecting his country's territorial integrity and sovereignty.

    On Monday, a Ukrainian delegation left the UN General Assembly during the speech of Russian President Vladimir Putin, who stressed that the full implementation of the February 2015 Minsk ceasefire agreements is the only way to resolve the Ukraine gridlock.

    Ukrainian authorities have been engaged in an armed conflict with the self-proclaimed republics of Lugansk and Donetsk in the country’s southeast since April 2014. Since the beginning of the conflict, Kiev has been calling on Western countries to provide it with lethal military assistance.

    As part of its security assistance program launched last year, the United States sent 300 military instructors to Ukraine in April, 2015, and provided security-related aid to the country worth about 245 million dollars.

    Last week, the Russian Foreign Ministry said that the deployment of US servicemen on Ukrainian territory violates article 10 of the ceasefire agreement reached in the Belarusian capital of Minsk, which stipulated the pullout of all foreign armed formations, military equipment and mercenaries from Ukraine. At least 7,962 people have already died in the Ukraine conflict, according to the UN.


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