Ukraine - updates

Rappler's latest stories on Ukraine

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4 charged with murder over downing of MH17

Jun 19, 2019 - 6:53 PM

(UPDATED) The move ramps up international pressure on Moscow over the downing of the plane

Flight MH17 crash probe set to name suspects

Jun 19, 2019 - 11:40 AM

The Dutch-led probe says it will first inform families, and then hold a press conference to unveil 'developments in the criminal investigation' into the downing of the Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777

Russia's defence ministry spokesman Maj. Gen. Igor Konashenkov (R) and the Chief of the Main Rocket and Artillery Department Lt. Gen. Nikolai Parshin attend a press briefing dedicated to the crash of the Malaysia Airlines Boeing 777 plane operating flight MH17 in Moscow on September 17, 2018. All 298 people on the Malaysia Airlines flight en route from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur were killed when a Russian-made Buk missile slammed into the plane over territory held by pro-Russian rebels in eastern Ukraine on July 17, 2014. Vasily MAXIMOV / AFP

6 dead in fire at Ukraine psychiatric hospital

Jun 11, 2019 - 2:51 PM

The fire erupts late on Monday evening, June 10, in the one-storey building, Ukraine's Emergency Service says in a statement. The cause of the fire is not immediately clear.

4 troops killed in Ukraine helicopter crash

May 30, 2019 - 4:15 PM

The Mi-8 helicopter crashes in the western Rivne region during a training flight late Wednesday, killing 3 crew members and the commander of the 16th Separate Army Aviation Brigade of Ground Forces, a statement says

Ukraine's Zelensky says first days of presidency 'a shock'

May 24, 2019 - 12:31 PM

Some of Zelensky's first staffing decisions raise eyebrows, sparking fear that he might be beholden to tycoon Igor Kolomoisky despite repeated denials.

Ukraine's Zelensky under fire over top appointment

May 22, 2019 - 10:32 PM

Ukraine's new president Volodymyr Zelensky issues a decree choosing as his top aide Andriy Bogdan, until now a personal lawyer of tycoon Igor Kolomoisky

CONTROVERSIAL APPOINTMENT. In this file photo, Ukrainian comedian and then presidential candidate Volodymyr Zelensky arrives at his campaign headquarters prior to the announcement of the first exit poll results in the second round of Ukraine's presidential election, Kiev, April 21, 2019. File photo by Genya Savilov/AFP

Kremlin warns new Ukraine leader against calls for more sanctions

May 21, 2019 - 9:12 PM

'This is the rhetoric that will not help Ukraine to sort out the problem of the southeast,' says Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, referring to the separatist conflict in the ex-Soviet country's industrial east

ZELENSKY. In this file photo taken on March 06, 2019 Ukrainian comic actor, showman and then presidential candidate Volodymyr Zelensky takes part in the shooting of the television series 'Servant of the People' where he plays the role of the President of Ukraine in Kiev. File photo by Sergei Supinsky/AFP

Ukraine's new president Zelensky calls snap elections

May 20, 2019 - 4:23 PM

(3rd UPDATE) The legal status of President Volodymyr Zelensky's move to dissolve parliament is uncertain but it is still likely to go ahead, political analysts say

THE NEW PRESIDENT. Ukrainian president-elect Volodymyr Zelensky waves to supporters as he arrives for his inauguration ceremony in Kiev on May 20, 2019. Photo by Sergei Supinsky/AFP

Kiev will not recognize Russian passports from rebel areas – PM

May 08, 2019 - 9:43 PM

'We will never recognize any citizenship that was issued by the aggressor state. This is like Nazi Germany issuing Ausweis (identity document) for certain people,' says Ukraine's Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman

UKRAINE. Ukrainian Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman gives a speech at the German-Ukrainian Economic Forum in Berlin on November 29, 2018. Photo by Odd Andersen/AFP

Putin fast-tracks Russian citizenship for more Ukrainians

May 01, 2019 - 7:55 PM

(UPDATED) The new Kremlin decree published May 1 says several categories of Ukrainian nationals will have the right to receive a Russian passport within 3 months of applying for one

PUTIN. Russian President Vladimir Putin, officials and other attendees listen to the national anthem at the end of Vladimir Putin's annual state of the nation address in Moscow on February 20, 2019. Photo by Mikhail Klimentyev/Sputnik/AFP

Russia slams 'scandalous' order in Ukraine to boost local language

Apr 25, 2019 - 11:05 PM

The reaction comes hours after Ukraine's parliament approved a controversial law to enhance the status of the Ukrainian language at the expense of Russian

LANGUAGE. Young activists write a placard reading 'Ukrainian language is us!' during a rally in front of the Ukrainian parliament in Kiev on April 25, 2019. The Ukrainian parliament has passed a law enforcing the use of Ukrainian in official settings. Photo by Sergei  Supinsky/AFP

Russia eases citizenship rules in east Ukraine

Apr 24, 2019 - 11:14 PM

President Vladimir Putin signs the decree aimed at residents of the unrecognized Donetsk and Lugansk republics that broke away from Kiev in 2014 and are governed by Moscow-backed rebels

DONETSK. In this file photo taken on November 9, 2018, people stand as they wait for Denis Pushilin, acting leader of the self-proclaimed Donetsk Republic, campaigning meeting and the concert in Donetsk. File photo by Aleksey Filippov/AFP

Russian PM sees 'chance' for better ties with new Ukraine leader

Apr 22, 2019 - 3:54 PM

Following Sunday's landslide victory for Volodymyr Zelensky in Ukraine, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev says 'there is a chance for improving cooperation with our country'

RUSSIA-UKRAINE TIES. Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev speaks during his annual address to the State Duma, the lower chamber of Russia's parliament, in Moscow on April 17, 2019. Photo by Yuri Kadobnov/AFP

Ukraine comedian Zelensky wins presidency in landslide

Apr 22, 2019 - 7:43 AM

(UPDATED) Volodymyr Zelensky, whose only previous political role was playing the president in a TV show, trounces incumbent Petro Poroshenko by taking 73.2%of the vote, according to nearly complete official results released on April 22

Ukrainian comedian and presidential candidate Volodymyr Zelensky arrives at his campaign headquarters prior to the announcement of the first exit poll results in the second round of Ukraine's presidential election, Kiev, April 21, 2019.  Genya SAVILOV / AFP

Comedian poised to take over presidency in Ukraine vote

Apr 21, 2019 - 3:35 PM

(UPDATED) Volodymyr Zelensky has tapped into widespread frustration over graft, poverty and a conflict with separatists that has claimed some 13,000 lives

PRESIDENTIAL ELECTIONS. Ukrainian comic actor, showman and presidential frontrunner Volodymyr Zelensky surrounded by cameramen and photographers plays table tennis with a journalist ahead of the provisional results at the headquarter in Kiev on March 31, 2019. Photo by Genya Savilov / AFP

Comedian, president in stadium debate ahead of Ukraine election

Apr 19, 2019 - 7:56 PM

The debate, set to take place in Kiev's 70,000-seater Olympic Stadium Friday evening, will be the first and only policy head-to-head of the campaign between Volodymyr Zelensky and Petro Poroshenko

DEBATE. This combination of files pictures made on March 31, 2019 shows portraits of presidential candidates: Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko (L) taken on November 3, 2018 and Ukrainian comic actor and showman Volodymyr Zelensky taken on March 6, 2019. Photos by Kayhan Ozer and Sergei Supinsky/AFP

Appeals for restraint as Ukraine's presidential race turns nasty

Apr 13, 2019 - 11:40 PM

After the first round of voting, the gloves have come off, with President Petro Poroshenko and Volodymyr Zelensky trading barbs and sparring bitterly on television

UKRAINE ELECTIONS. Presidential candidates Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko (L) and comic actor and showman Volodymyr Zelensky. Photos by Sergei Supinsky and Kayhan Ozer/AFP

Ukraine comedian Zelensky to meet Macron before presidential run-off

Apr 12, 2019 - 4:20 PM

Volodymyr Zelensky, whose only political experience is playing the president in a TV show, is due to meet Macron at the Elysee palace

ZELENSKY. Ukrainian comic actor, showman and presidential frontrunner Volodymyr Zelensky surrounded by cameramen and photographers plays table tennis with a journalist at the headquarters in Kiev on March 31, 2019. Photo by Genya Savilov/AFP

No joke – comedian Zelensky sets course for Ukraine presidency

Apr 01, 2019 - 6:11 PM

Volodymyr Zelenky's political experience is limited to playing the president in a TV show but he leapfrogs establishment candidates amid public frustration over corruption and a stalling economy

ZELENSKY ON COURSE. Ukrainian comic actor and presidential frontrunner Volodymyr Zelensky plays table tennis with a journalist ahead of the provisional results at the headquarter in Kiev on March 31, 2019. Photo by Genya Savilov/AFP

Ukraine's Poroshenko vows to beat comedian rival as campaign closes

Mar 29, 2019 - 10:39 PM

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has sought to position himself as the only candidate who can stand up to Moscow as he seeks to beat back support for poll-leader Volodymyr Zelensky

UKRAINE ELECTIONS. This combination of pictures show the 3 frontrunners in Ukraine's presidential election: comedian Volodymyr Zelensky, incumbent Petro Poroshenko and former prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko. Photos by Petras Malukas and SergeiSupinsky/AFP

Measles: Nearly wiped-out, on the rise again

Mar 27, 2019 - 9:31 PM

The United Nations says worldwide cases of measles jumped by more than 30% in 2017, and infections continued to rise in 2018

MEASLES ON THE RISE. This file photo shows patients stricken with measles inside the pediatric ward of San Lazaro Hospital in Manila on February 11, 2019. File photo by Inoue Jaena/Rappler

Australia and Netherlands in talks with Russia over downed Malaysia jet

Mar 27, 2019 - 6:53 PM

Five countries – Australia, Belgium, Malaysia, the Netherlands and Ukraine – continue to investigate the downing of flight MH17 over Ukraine

MH17. A picture taken on July 17, 2014 shows wreckages of the Malaysian airliner carrying 295 people from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur after it crashed, near the town of Shaktarsk, in rebel-held east Ukraine. File photo by Dominique Faget / AFP

Putin in Crimea as Russia marks 5 years since annexation

Mar 18, 2019 - 8:49 PM

In Russia, March 18 has been proclaimed the 'Day of Crimea's Reunification with Russia' and celebrated with events across the country. In Crimea, it is a public holiday.

5 YEARS. People carry Russian flags during celebrations of the fifth anniversary of Russia's annexation of Crimea in Simferopol on March 15, 2019. Photo by STR/AFP

In war-torn Ukraine, women get taste of combat training

Feb 16, 2019 - 7:52 PM

Fifty women aged 18 to 40 – including a make-up artist, a veterinarian, and a housewife – signed up for the courses to learn gun handling basics and hand-to-hand combat

Women and girls take part in a two-hour session to learn gun handling basics and hand-to-hand combat at a shopping mall in the Ukrainian city of Mariupol on January 26, 2019. Training in handling firearms is part of the self-defense courses for women that were established last year due to war that goes on in Ukraine's separatist east. Courses that are called "White Angels" and are totally free were organized by police officers and former soldiers who fought against Russia-backed rebels in about 20 kilometres (12 miles) from Mariupol. ALEKSEY FILIPPOV / AFP

Ukraine bans Russians from monitoring elections

Feb 08, 2019 - 9:34 AM

Kiev, fighting a Moscow-backed insurgency in eastern Ukraine, says it suspects Russia of planning to interfere in the election

RUSSIA BAN. Ukrainian lawmakers applaud as they react after the voting in the parliament in Kiev on February 7, 2019. Photo by Sergei Supinsky/AFP

Exiled Yanukovych slams Poroshenko ahead of Ukraine vote

Feb 06, 2019 - 11:50 PM

Former Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovych warns that Petro Poroshenko winning a second term in office would have 'unpredictable consequences' for Ukraine

Facing uphill fight, Ukraine's Poroshenko announces reelection bid

Jan 29, 2019 - 10:37 PM

Opinion polls put him behind ex-prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko, who rose to international prominence in 2004 during the anti-corruption Orange Revolution demonstrations

PETRO POROSHENKO. This file photo shows Ukraine's President Petro Poroshenko giving a press statement on January 30, 2017. File photo by Odd Andersen / AFP

Novelist Paulo Coelho denies endorsing Ukraine's ex-PM Tymoshenko

Jan 24, 2019 - 11:18 PM

'I never recorded any message supporting her current candidacy,' says the writer

Ex-PM Tymoshenko launches bid for Ukraine presidency

Jan 22, 2019 - 9:02 PM

(UPDATED) 'Maybe sometimes I'm wrong, but I'm wrong sincerely,' former Ukrainian prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko tells an audience waving yellow-and-blue Ukrainian flags

PRESIDENTIAL BID. In this file photo, Ukraine's former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko speaks during a political forum in Kiev on June 15, 2017. File photo by Genya Savilov/AFP

Orthodox patriarch signs decree on independent Ukraine church

Jan 06, 2019 - 12:09 AM

'Dear Ukrainians, this is a historic event! This is a great day!' says Ukraine's President Petro Poroshenko

SIGNED. This handout picture taken and released by the Ukrainian Presidential Press Service on January 5, 2019 shows Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I signing the 'Tomos' decree of autocephaly of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church at the Patriarchal Church of St George in Istanbul. Photo by Mykola Lazarenko/Ukrainian Presidential Press Service/AFP

Ukraine creates church independent from Russia

Dec 16, 2018 - 12:27 AM

Ukraine President Petro Poroshenko addresses the synod of bishops, saying Kiev's national security depends on 'spiritual independence' from Moscow

SYNOD. This handout picture taken and released by Ukrainian Presidential press-service shows Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko (L) talking as he attends the historic synod expected to establish an Orthodox church independent from Russia on December 15, 2018. Photo by Genya Savilov/Ukrainian Presidential Press Service/AFP

Ukraine priests to hold historic 'unification' synod

Dec 15, 2018 - 12:18 PM

The synod seeks to recognize Ukraine's independence from the Russian Orthodox Church

HISTORIC. Kiev authorities express hope that the unification synod will be a one step closer to independence from Russia. Photo from Shutterstock

U.S., Ukraine navy heads meet after Russia ship seizure

Dec 14, 2018 - 3:52 PM

Ukraine's foreign minister calls for a speedy international response to Russia's 'aggression' after it seized the 3 Ukrainian navy ships and 24 sailors

Ukraine calls for international action against Russian 'aggression'

Dec 06, 2018 - 11:57 PM

At a meeting of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) in Milan, Pavlo Klimkin says this is the fifth consecutive OSCE ministerial meeting to be dominated by Russia's 'destabilizing' behavior in Europe

PAVLO KLIMKIN. Ukraine's Foreign Affairs minister Pavlo Klimkin (L) talks with Turkey's Foreign Affairs minister Mevlut Cavusoglu (R) during a NATO Foreign Ministers meeting at the NATO headquarters in Brussels on December 4, 2018. Photo by John Thys/AFP

Putin defends 'lawful' seizure of Ukrainian ships

Nov 29, 2018 - 1:38 PM

Moscow and Kiev have traded angry accusations since Russian navy vessels fired on, boarded, and captured the 3 Ukrainian ships off the coast of Crimea

PUTIN. Russia's President Vladimir Putin is pictured at the start of the first working session of the G20 meeting in Hamburg, northern Germany, on July 7. File photo by Kay Nietfeld/AFP

Trump says may cancel Putin meet after Ukraine-Russia sea clash

Nov 28, 2018 - 7:21 PM

Trump is scheduled to meet Putin at the G20 summit in Buenos Aires at the end of this week, but that may not happen because of a confrontation at sea between Russia and Ukraine

-- AFP PICTURES OF THE YEAR 2018 -- Russian President Vladimir Putin (R) and US President Donald Trump attend a meeting in Helsinki, on July 16, 2018.  Brendan SMIALOWSKI / AFP

Ukrainian president warns of threat of 'full-scale war' with Russia

Nov 28, 2018 - 9:25 AM

'I don't want anyone to think this is fun and games. Ukraine is under threat of full-scale war with Russia,' says Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko

POROSHENKO. Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko delivers his speech from Parliament tribune during an emergency session in Kiev on November 26, 2018, ahead of a parliamentary vote on the request of the Ukrainian President to impose martial law in the country. Photo by Genya Savilov/AFP

U.N. chief urges 'maximum restraint' from Russia, Ukraine

Nov 27, 2018 - 11:34 PM

UN secretary general Antonio Guterres urges Russia and Ukraine 'to take steps without delay to contain this incident and reduce tensions through all available peaceful means in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations'

CONDEMNING THE LAUNCH. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres. File photo by Manuel Elias/UN

Ukraine backs martial law after confrontation at sea with Russia

Nov 27, 2018 - 2:00 PM

After intense debate, 276 lawmakers vote in favor of President Petro Poroshenko's request for martial law in border areas for 30 days

MARTIAL LAW. In this file photo, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko holds a press conference on August 30, 2014. File photo by John Thys/AFP

NATO calls emergency meeting with Ukraine on sea clash

Nov 26, 2018 - 8:29 PM

A naval standoff between Ukraine and Russia off the coast of Crimea spikes tension in Europe

PROTEST. Activists of Ukrainian far-right groups hold flares during their rally in front of the Ukrainian parliament in Kiev on November 26, 2018, as they demand to set martial law in the country and to cut diplomatic relations with Russia. Sergei Supinsky/AFP

Russia confirms seizing 3 Ukrainian naval ships off Crimea

Nov 26, 2018 - 7:00 AM

Ukraine's navy says the incident took place as two small warships and a tugboat were heading through the strait for the port of Mariupol

INCIDENT IN THE BLACK SEA. This handout picture taken and released by the Ukrainian Presidential Press Service on November 25, 2018 shows Ukraine's Minister of Foreign Affairs Pavlo Klimkin delivering a statement in Kiev. Handout photo by Ukrainian Presidential Press Service

Ukraine separatists hold elections in defiance of capital Kiev

Nov 11, 2018 - 3:28 PM

The election can be traced to 2014, when Russia annexed Crimea and supported the outbreak of an insurgency in eastern Ukraine in what Kiev sees as punishment for its pivot to the West

SUPPORT RALLY. People stand with flags as they wait for Denis Pushilin, the leader of the self-proclaimed Donetsk Republic, during his campaign meeting and a concert in Donetsk on November 9, 2018. Photo by Aleksey Filippo/AFP

EU prize awarded to Ukraine's Sentsov in slap to Russia

Oct 25, 2018 - 11:39 PM

The European Parliament gives the Sakharov human rights prize to Ukrainian Oleg Sentsov and called for Russia to free the filmmaker

HUNGER STRIKE. In this handout picture released by the Federal Penitentiary Service in Russia's Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug on September 29, 2018, Ukrainian filmmaker Oleg Sentsov undergoes medical examination at a state hospital in Labytnangi. Photo by Russian Federal Penitentiary Service/AFP

Ukraine rebel's murder a 'provocation' against peace, says Kremlin

Sep 01, 2018 - 5:26 PM

Alexander Zakharchenko, head of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic, is killed in a bombing at a cafe in Donetsk, becoming the 4-year conflict's most prominent victim from the Moscow-backed side

SEPARATIST LEADER. In this file photo taken on November 4, 2014, the newly elected leader of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic, Alexander Zakharchenko (R), takes the oath during an inauguration ceremony in the eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk. Photo by Alexander Khudoteply/AFP

Paul Manafort: from Trump campaign to prison

Aug 22, 2018 - 9:18 AM

What should have been his dream job ended up being his undoing

PAUL MANAFORT. Donald Trump's former campaign manager is convicted of 5 counts of making false income tax returns, two counts of bank fraud, and one of failure to report foreign bank and financial accounts. AFP file photos

Ukrainian president slams Russian church as 'national security threat'

Jul 28, 2018 - 11:23 PM

Conflict between Ukraine and Russia has exacerbated tensions between the two churches, with Ukranian Patriarch Filaret once saying Putin was 'possessed by Satan'

LEADERS. Patriarch Filaret (L) of the Kiev-based Ukrainian Orthodox Church and Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko (2nd L) attend a religious procession in Kiev on July 28, 2018, marking the 1030th anniversary of the Christianization of Kievan Rus. Photo by Genya Savilov/AFP

Russia dismisses U.S. Crimea declaration

Jul 26, 2018 - 5:56 PM

'We know the worth of these 'fateful declarations',' Russian foreign ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova says in a sarcastic comment on Facebook late Wednesday, July 25

MARIA ZAKHAROVA. Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova speaks to the media in Moscow on March 29, 2018. File photo by Yuri Kadobnov/AFP

At Trump summit, Putin made 'concrete' Ukraine offer, says envoy

Jul 21, 2018 - 9:02 AM

A US State Department spokesperson tweets, 'To be clear: The Administration is not considering supporting a referendum in [eastern] Ukraine'

TRUMP-PUTIN SUMMIT. Russia's President Vladimir Putin (R) listens while US President Donald Trump speaks ahead of their meeting in Helsinki, on July 16, 2018. File photo by Brendan Smialowski/AFP

OSCE watchdog slams Ukraine for extraditing blogger to Turkey

Jul 19, 2018 - 7:39 PM

Ukrainian authorities confirm journalist and blogger Yusuf Inan had been handed to the Turkish authorities after Kiev received a request to extradite him last October

HARLEM DESIR. Human rights activist focused in media law Fultura Kusar, OSCE Media Freedom Representative Harlem Desir. Photo by Vladimir Simicek/AFP

White House won't recognize Crimea annexation – official

Jul 03, 2018 - 10:12 AM

'We agree to disagree and the sanctions against Russia remain in place until Russia returns the peninsula to the Ukraine,' White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders tells reporters

WHITE HOUSE. In this file photo, White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders addresses a briefing at the White House June 25, 2018 in Washington, DC. File photo by Brendan Smialowski/AFP