TOKYO (Reuters) - No normalization of ties between Ukraine and Russia is likely unless the region of Crimea, now under Russian control, is returned to Kiev's sovereignty, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin said on Tuesday. Klimkin, on the second day of his two-day trip to Japan, also said the border between Ukraine and Russia needed to be completely closed to achieve any settlement to the armed conflict between Kiev and pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine. He reiterated his government's stance as a ceasefire deal, reached last month in Minsk, is broadly holding on the front line, but fighters in the separatist stronghold of Donetsk are training for another round of clashes against government troops. "There could be no slightest way of normalizing or getting back to business in the relations between Ukraine and Russia without returning to status quo and establishing full Ukrainian sovereignty over Crimea," Klimkin told reporters in Tokyo. Russia annexed the Black Sea peninsula of Crimea from Ukraine a year ago. "The ultimate precondition for any effective, final settlement is to fully close down the Ukrainian-Russian border," he said. "Because everything that has been destabilizing the situation in (the Ukrainian cities of) Donetsk and Lugansk - mercenaries, money, weapons, heavy weaponry, and of course Russian rebel troops - came through the Russian-Ukrainian border." Ukraine and Western governments have accused Russia of sending troops and weapons to support separatists in eastern Ukraine, despite the peace deal agreed on Feb. 12. Moscow has denied this. "We stress from the very beginning that we've been striving for a peaceful solution. But we will use any means for defending Ukraine's territorial integrity and sovereignty," Klimkin said. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry told Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Monday that Moscow and pro-Russian separatists in Ukraine must implement the ceasefire or face "consequences" that could further hit Russia's faltering economy. (Reporting by Kiyoshi Takenaka; Editing by Nick Macfie)
- Miami Herald
Of everything the Miami Hurricanes did wrong in their stunning loss to the Middle Tennessee Blue Raiders before their bye week, perhaps the most alarming pratfall was the return of an all-too-familiar, awful Miami trope.
- Rams Wire
The streaker who was leveled by Wagner on Monday night filed a police report against the #Rams linebacker
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- Business Insider
Trump said the FBI found classified documents at his home because federal workers packed them. But emails Bloomberg got show boxes were already packed when movers arrived.
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- Rams Wire
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- Yahoo Life
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- Business Insider
The Navy just deployed its $13 billion aircraft carrier, which was both commissioned and panned by Trump, who ranted: 'It just doesn't look right'
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- Ukrayinska Pravda
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- Miami Herald
And how does that compare to former Presidents Obama and Trump?
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- Ukrayinska Pravda
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