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30/09/2016

WRAP-UP: EU summit on Ukraine – Avoiding a new Cold War?

Europe's East

WRAP-UP: EU summit on Ukraine – Avoiding a new Cold War?

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EU heads of state and government gathered in Brussels on Thursday (6 March) to take measures in response to the escalation of the crisis in Ukraine. Follow all the developments as they happen in our live feed, below.

Background

The Ukrainian government announced on 21 November that it had decided to stop its preparations to sign an Association Agreement (AA) with the EU.

Following the news that the country’s president Viktor Yanukovich failed to sign the AA at the Vilnius summit on 28-29 November, hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians took to the streets in what is called the EuroMaidan protest, demanding his resignation [read more]. In the meantime, Yanukovich accepted a $15-billion (€11 billion) Russian bailout.

On 18 February at least 26 people died in the worst violence since the EuroMaidan protests started. Yanukovich accused pro-European opposition leaders of trying to seize power. Worse, on 20 February at least 47 people were killed in central Kyiv, many by snipers or machine-gun fire. On the same day, EU ministers met urgently in Brussels and imposed sanctions to Ukrainian officials responsible for the massacre [read more].

On 21 February Ukraine opposition leaders signed an EU-mediated peace deal with President Yanukovich [read more]. But the protestors said they would stay on until Yanukovich resigned. On 22 February Yanukovich fled Kyiv and Parliament speaker Oleksander Turchinov took over as acting president. On 26 February a government was formed [read more].