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U.S. says Russian military action in Ukraine would be 'grave mistake'

Updated: 2014-02-27 PM 4:01:48 (KST)
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The United States is stepping up the pressure on Russia not to intervene in Ukraine.
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry on Wednesday warned Moscow that any kind of military intervention that violates Ukraine's territorial integrity would be "a grave mistake.
This came after Russia ordered surprise military exercises near the Ukrainian border.
Although the war games are said to be nothing unusual, the timing raises suspicion of a possible military intervention in Ukraine.
Russia's defense ministry said, however, the exercises were "to check combat readiness of armed forces" and have nothing to do with Ukraine's internal affairs.

In the meantime, Ukraine is in the midst of a shaky transition.
The interim leadership announced Wednesday its line-up for a new cabinet, following the ousting of President Viktor Yanukovich last week.
The Maidan Council -- Kiev's main protest camp -- proposed Arseny Yatseniuk, a former economy minister, as prime minister, and Oleksander Shlapak, former deputy head of the central bank, as finance minister.
The full list of proposed leaders will be presented to parliament on Thursday for approval.
If confirmed, officials will likely seek aid from Western powers to stave off default, as Russia is expected to back away from a 15-billion-dollar bailout program it offered Yanukovich.
The U.S. said it was considering loan guarantees and additional funding to assist Ukraine.

Earlier Wednesday, pro-Ukraine and pro-Russia protesters clashed in the capital of Ukraine's Crimea region -- where the majority of people are ethnic Russians -- leaving one person dead and many others injured.
Yanukovich fled Kiev last Friday after days of violence.
The new government wants him tried at the International Criminal Court for ordering the killing of scores of anti-government protesters.
Kim Min-ji, Arirang News.


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