MOSCOW, June 4 (Xinhua) -- Russia said Wednesday it was not mulling a proposal to have the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) impose a no-fly zone in eastern Ukraine.
"At the current stage, we are not considering such an initiative," deputy foreign minister Gennady Gatilov told reporters, adding western countries would not back the proposal.
Russia submitted a draft resolution on Ukraine to the UNSC Monday, proposing talks to end the violence and create humanitarian corridors in that country.
"Unfortunately, our western partners did not support the Russian initiative, as they consider that there are no humanitarian problems in eastern Ukraine," RIA Novosti news agency quoted Gatilov as saying.
Authorities in the self-proclaimed Lugansk People's Republic called for a peacekeeping contingent and a no-fly zone on Tuesday, after the Ukrainian air force launched an air strike on the region's administration building, reportedly killing eight people.
Ukrainian media said battles in the Donetsk region on Tuesday killed at least 300 militants and injured 45 government soldiers, citing special forces spokesperson Vladislav Seleznyov.
Russia has repeatedly said a humanitarian catastrophe was haunting Ukraine, while Kiev has accused Moscow of inciting unrest in its southeastern regions.
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Ukraine puts death toll from eastern unrest at 181
KIEV, June 3 (Xinhua) -- The death toll from a separatist uprising in eastern Ukraine has climbed to 181 and some 300 people were injured, the country's acting Prosecutor General Oleg Makhnytsky said on Tuesday.
"Terrorists' actions in Donetsk and Lugansk regions killed 181 and injured 293 people. At least 59 Ukrainian soldiers are among those killed," Makhnytsky told a press conference. Full story
NATO enhances collective defense, reaffirms support for Ukraine
BRUSSELS, June 3 (Xinhua) -- NATO defense ministers on Tuesday agreed to further reinforce their reassurance measures in the wake of the Russia-Ukraine crisis and expressed support for reforms in Ukraine.
"This is a time for all Allies to play a part, and all Allies are doing so," NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen said. "Every single Ally is committing resources to our collective defense." Full story
Obama holds talks with Central, Eastern European leaders on security, regional issues
WARSAW, June 3 (Xinhua) -- U.S. President Barack Obama has arrived in Warsaw to take part in the Freedom Day celebrations marking the 25th anniversary of Poland's first partly-free elections, held June 4, 1989.
Having held talks with Polish President Bronislaw Komorowski and Prime Minister Donald Tusk and attended a meeting of 17 Central and Eastern European heads of states and governments, Obama will address guests in Warsaw's Castle Square on Wednesday. Full story