Ukraine: Despite ceasefire, Russian arms still coming in

Reports that Russian arms are still flowing into Ukraine with no interruption cast doubts on how effective the Minsk II Accords will be at keeping peace official. Unofficially, fighting still rages around the Donetsk airport and Mauripol and many senior military officials from NATO have made public statements that Moscow continues to provide aid and lethal military weaponry to separatists in Eastern Ukraine, including US Air Force General Philip Breedlove at a meeting of NATO’s joint intelligence unit in the UK.

Breedlove pressed that arming Ukraine has become an issue of far greater importance in light of these developments. As one of the Joint Chiefs, it is likely that Breedlove has been making the case in the Obama administration send lethal aid to Ukraine, despite a recent pledge by Obama to the German ambassador that diplomacy would take the forefront. Victoria Nuland, US Assistant Secretary of State for European affairs, said on Friday that Mr. Obama has not made a decision to arm Ukraine and the administration’s largest concern is “destabilization.”

On the European side, incoming replacement for Catherine Ashton Federica Mogherini refused to state up or down if Russian was adhering to the Minsk pact. The Russians, meanwhile, continue to deny publicly that any Russian arms are going into Ukraine, with Konstantin Kosachev, Chairman of the Duma’s international affairs committee, leading the way.

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News Briefs:

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