Russian convoy leaves Ukraine, Merkel visits Kiev

The unauthorized aid convoy that has attracted so much international attention in the past week has returned to Russian territory over the weekend after visiting the eastern city of Luhansk. Kiev and Western officials, noting the lack of Red Cross observers and direct inspection of the humanitarian aid, contend that the trucks had military equipment to assist rebels in the area fight against the advancing Ukrainian military.

Russian spokesmen insisted they have delivered only generators, food, and drink. With over 2,000 dead and 330,000 displaced in the war thus far, the crisis is both a humanitarian and a political disaster. Kiev will be receiving 500 million euros from Germany after Chancellor Angela Merkel visited, promising that the funds will go towards rebuilding the country’s damaged infrastructure.

Despite the tension between Ukraine and Russia, there is a surprising lack of finger-pointing. This probably has to do with the fact that Ukrainian president Petro Poroshenko is scheduled to meet with Vladimir Putin and EU officials in Minsk, Belarus, on Tuesday. No references were made to the claim by NATO that Russian forces were more active inside Ukraine over the weekend, in an effort to keep tensions manageable.

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News Briefs:

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