Poroshenko offers ceasefire to ease rising tensions

New President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko said he would introduce a new ceasefire framework that would allow separatist groups and government forces to engage in peaceful negotiation and settlement. Despite the institution of these new rules of engagement, Poroshenko reported to the Ukrainian National Security Council that there was no need to involve the country “in a protracted negotiation process.” Oleksandr Turchynov, the former Acting President, now Parliament Speaker, said that Poroshenko has also introduced a bill for decentralization bill later this week as a show of good faith to separatist groups.

Earlier, on June 10, Poroshenko organized a “humanitarian corridor” for civilians to leave the combat areas in Donetsk and Luhansk. Whether this move has purely humanitarian motives or is simply a way to remove civilians in what is sure to be a combat zone. Local administrations were charged with the evacuation of refugees from Donetsk and Luhansk. The humanitarian operation has yet to be organized, however, and the press of the separatist Luhansk People’s Republic (LPR) said they “have no information about the existence and operation of humanitarian corridors on the territory of the LPR.” The separatist Donetsk People’s Republic issued the same statement.

Simultaneously, Russia has circulated a new UN resolution on Ukraine to get the UNSC involved to address the worsening situation. Russia’s UN Ambassador Vitaly Churkin said the new resolution includes parts of two earlier resolutions that includes humanitarian aid, a ceasefire, and a national dialogue. Churkin also asked for a full condmenation by the General Assembly of the downing of a Ukrianian military transport plane by pro-Russian separatist early Saturday, which killed 49. Separatists have also apparently struck out at Poroshenko – over the weekend, a bomb was discovered near his headquarters on Saturday. No one has claimed responsibility thus far.

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