Kerry to reiterate U.S. open to sanctions on Ukraine

PARIS Wed Feb 19, 2014 10:02am EST

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry waves as he departs Abu Dhabi International Airport February 18, 2014. REUTERS/Evan Vucci/Pool

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry waves as he departs Abu Dhabi International Airport February 18, 2014.

Credit: Reuters/Evan Vucci/Pool

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PARIS (Reuters) - Secretary of State John Kerry is expected on Wednesday to again raise the possibility of U.S. sanctions on Ukraine, where at least 26 people have been killed in the worst day of violence since independence, a U.S. official said.

The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said Kerry was expected "to reiterate that the United States is open" to imposing sanctions on Ukraine, a threat President Barack Obama's administration first made more than two months ago.

U.S. officials have previously said they were reluctant to impose sanctions, preferring to seek a diplomatic solution to the political crisis that erupted last year when Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich spurned a broad trade deal with the EU and accepted a $15 billion Russian bailout.

It was unclear whether Tuesday's violence in Kiev had changed sentiment sufficiently in Washington to prompt it to actually impose economic sanctions, which have been under discussion for months and were threatened in December.

At least 26 people, including 10 policemen, were killed in violence that erupted on Tuesday and continued overnight. Many were killed by gunshots and hundreds were wounded, dozens seriously, police and opposition representatives said.

(Reporting by Arshad Mohammed; writing by John Irish; editing by Mark John and Alistair Lyon)

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Comments (4)
elsewhere wrote:
Why not have sanctions, they worked so well in Iran? Kerry’s threats against foreign governments are meaningless unless you are a friend then he and his boss will mess you around badly. Ask Israel.

Feb 19, 2014 10:16am EST  --  Report as abuse
sabrefencer wrote:
Kerry talking again….yawnnnnnnnnnn…starbucks please

Feb 19, 2014 10:42am EST  --  Report as abuse
Bighammerman wrote:
Kerry, stay out of it. You will only make it worse because you and Obama are not competent to address this.

Feb 19, 2014 11:37am EST  --  Report as abuse
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