Kurt Volker Arrives in Donbas
He met with the commander of the Joint Forces Operation, Serhii Naiev
Photo from UATV
The United States special representative for Ukraine negotiations, Kurt Volker, arrived in Eastern Ukraine and met with the commander of the Joint Forces Operations, Serhii Naiev, UATV reports.
“We are glad to welcome you in the area of the operation. We thank our partners for their support in the fight against the Russian aggressor,” Naiev said.
Naiev will acquaint Volker with Ukraine’s operation near the conflict zone. Volker, along with members of the Ukrainian military, will discuss the security situation in Donbas and exchange views on ways to peacefully settle the conflict.
Photo from UATV
It is the first meeting of the Ukrainian commander with the U.S. special representative since the beginning of the Joint Forces Operation.
Earlier, Volker arrived at the front-line in Popasna, Luhansk region. First, he headed to the base of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), where he spoke with Alexander Hug, the principal deputy chief monitor of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine.
Volker tweeted on May 11 about his visit to Eastern Ukraine, where he said that he wanted to learn about the humanitarian situation in Donbas. He has not yet revealed whether he will also go to Russia and hold talks with Russian officials.
On May 14, the U.S. Agency for International Development(USAID) said that it would additionally provide $125 million in aid to Donbas and the neighboring areas that have been affected by Russian aggression. The additional grant will be announced at a joint press conference to be held today by assistant administrator for USAID’s Bureau for Europe and Eurasia, Brock Bierman, Volker and the U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine, Marie Yovanovitch. The press conference will take place in the Ukrainian-controlled town of Sloviansk in Donetsk region.
Since April 2014, more than 10 thousand people have been killed by fighting between Ukrainian government forces and Russia-backed separatists, who control parts of Donetsk and Luhansk regions.