MOSCOW, April 20 (Xinhua) -- Five people were killed early Sunday during a clash between gunmen and pro-Russia protesters in eastern Ukraine's town of Slavyansk, the Russian state television reported.
A group of unidentified gunmen attacked a checkpoint controlled by pro-Russia protesters, resulting in the death of three protesters and two gunmen, the state-run Rossiya 24 news station reported.
Tensions in eastern Ukraine have been escalating last weekend following an armed confrontation between Ukrainian security forces and pro-Moscow protesters, who demanded a referendum on autonomy and closer ties with Russia.
Concerned about the situation in eastern Ukraine, the United States, Russia, Ukraine, and the European Union concluded talks in Geneva Thursday after signing a statement, asking all sides to refrain from violence, intimidation or provocative actions as part of initial steps to restore order in the country.
U.S. threatens more sanctions for Russia's failure to help ease tension in Ukraine
WASHINGTON, April 18 (Xinhua) -- The White House on Friday threatened additional sanctions on Russia in case of its failure to help calm down the tense situation in eastern Ukraine.
The U.S., the EU, Russia and Ukraine on Thursday brokered an agreement in Geneva to de-escalate tension in eastern Ukraine, where pro-Russian militants were occupying government buildings in some cities, and Ukraine's military operation had failed to flush them out. Full story
Britain's Hague offers "cautious welcome" to Ukraine agreement
LONDON, April 18 (Xinhua) -- British Foreign Secretary William Hague on Friday offered his "cautious welcome" to the agreement reached at the four-way Geneva talks over the Ukraine crisis on Thursday.
"Yesterday's agreement was at the top end of our expectations. We should certainly welcome it, but it should be a cautious welcome. The next steps are to see implementation, and we need to see progress quickly over the next few days," Hague said in a statement. Full story
Ukraine gov't mulls constitutional reform
KIEV, April 18 (Xinhua) -- Ukraine's government is prepared to conduct constitutional changes that would grant more say to local governments on budget and tax policy and give the Russian language a special status in efforts to overcome the current crisis in the country, Prime Minister Arseny Yatsenyuk said here Friday.
"The Ukrainian government is ready to conduct comprehensive constitutional reform that will strengthen the regions' powers," Yatsenyuk said in a televised address to the nation. Full story