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Ukraine military says a column of refugees was attacked leaving Luhansk, killing many women and children. Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko will meet Russian President Vladimir Putin in Minsk, Belarus on August 26.

Shown here is UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon meeting with Anders Fogh Rasmussen, Secretary–General of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). UN Photo/Paulo Figueiras

Shown here is UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon meeting with Anders Fogh Rasmussen, Secretary–General of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). UN Photo/Paulo Figueiras


In his remarks at a press conference on August 7 in Kiev, Anders Fogh Rasmussen, Secretary-General of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) stated: “So, I call on Russia to step back from the brink. Step back from the border. Do not use peacekeeping forces as an excuse for war making. I urge Russia to follow the genuine path to peace, to stop its support for separatists. To pull back its troops from Ukraine’s border. And to engage in a sincere dialogue “ he said.

During his visit to Kiev, the NATO Secretary-General also met with Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenuk, Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin and the Speaker of the Parliament, Oleksandr Turchinov. Ukrainian President Poroshenko has been invited to attend the NATO Summit Wales 2014 hosted by the United Kingdom on September 4-5. The event has been billed as “the Largest gathering of international leaders ever to take place in Britain.” Expected to attend the NATO s Summit in Wales will be President Obama, Chancellor Merkel, President Hollande, and other world leaders from around 60 countries.

At UN Headquarters in New York, the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon stated on August 13 during a telephone conversation with Petro Poroshenko, President of Ukraine, that he had continued to follow the crisis in Ukraine closely and reiterated the urgent need for redoubling political and diplomatic efforts towards a peaceful resolution. The Secretary-General also expressed the hope that there be tangible progress in implementing President Poroshenko’s peace plan. On August 8, Mr. Ban said that , “if there is further deterioration of the humanitarian situation, or if nationally-led response efforts are not sufficient to meet humanitarian needs, the United Nations is ready to consider additional measures of support.”

“At this stage, the situation is being handled appropriately by the Government of Ukraine, in coordination with international partners” he added. He appealed to all parties to redouble their efforts
towards achieving a lasting and peaceful political solution to the conflict in eastern Ukraine. “This is the most effective way to save lives and avoid a humanitarian crisis” he concluded. President Poroshenko
said that due to the support of the global community, Ukraine avoided the escalation of the situation with humanitarian aid from Russia.

As President Poroshenko put it, “Ukraine had gathered about 80 trucks with humanitarian aid for the Donbas residents in Ukraine, and that Ukraine was working with the International Committee of the Red Cross According to the President, “the International Committee of the Red Cross receives the humanitarian assistance and ensures that residents at Luhansk and other cities receive products, medicines, power generators, etc.” The Ukrainian President said he wanted all people affected by terrorist actions to return to normal life.

Ann Charles
Ann Charles is UN Bureau Chief of "Baltic Review" based in New York City. She covers diplomatic activities at United Nations Headquarters in New York and the world body's work in human rights, education, culture, the environment, and tourism, among other global concerns.

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