NPR : News

Filed Under:

Ukraine Forces Near Rebel City As Russia Escalates Border Exercises

Russia and Ukraine are holding large military exercises along their shared border as the Ukrainian military claims to be closing in on rebel strongholds in Donetsk and Luhansk, NPR's Karoun Demirjian reports from Moscow.

Government troops and separatists have been fighting for months for control of eastern Ukraine, Karoun says, and Ukrainian leaders say Russia has been supplying the separatists with weapons and strategic assistance — a charge Moscow denies.

Bloomberg reports that Russia's buildup in advance of its exercises has alarmed Ukrainian officials.

"Russia, which annexed Crimea from Ukraine in March, has deployed 45,000 soldiers, 160 tanks and as many as 1,360 armored vehicles, a Ukrainian military spokesman, Andriy Lysenko, told reporters in Kiev today. There are also 192 Russian warplanes and 137 military helicopters, as well as artillery systems and multiple rocket launchers, he said.

" 'All this is aimed at keeping the Ukrainian military on its toes,' Timothy Ash, an emerging-markets economist at Standard Bank Group Plc in London, said in an e-mail. 'While Russia continues to pursue such maneuvers, the Ukrainian military has to deploy troops along its border to counter the threat of a Russian invasion, and hence diverting scarce troops away from their ongoing offensive.' "

Farther inside Ukraine, however, the government appeared to progressing in pushing back Russia-aligned rebels, entering their stronghold of Donetsk, The Associated Press reports. The AP says that one elderly civilian was killed by government shelling and that a fifth of the city's 1 million population is believed to have fled.

Russia, meanwhile, took a number of measures on Tuesday, according to Reuters,

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

Opulent And Apolitical: The Art Of The Met's Islamic Galleries

Navina Haidar, an Islamic art curator at the Met, says she isn't interested in ideology: "The only place where we allow ourselves any passion is in the artistic joy ... of something that's beautiful."
NPR

Tired Of The Seoul-Sucking Rat Race, Koreans Flock To Farming

More than 80 percent of people in South Korea live in cities. But in the past few years, there has been a shift. Tens of thousands of South Koreans are relocating to the countryside each year.
WAMU 88.5

Fannie Lou Hamer and the Fight for Voting Rights

Kojo explores the life and legacy of Fannie Lou Hamer, a poor Mississippi sharecropper who became an outspoken voice in the civil rights movement and the fight for voting rights.

WAMU 88.5

Computer Guys and Gal

Chrysler recalls cars to boost their cybersecurity. Microsoft debuts its new Windows 10 operating system. And navigation tech could bring us robotic lawn mowers. The Computer Guys and Gal explain.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.