Pro-Western President Petro Poroshenko faces a stern test of his unpopular belt-tightening measures and stuttering anti-corruption drive when Ukraine votes in local elections today that exclude the pro-Russian separatist east.
A blacklisted deputy prime minister of Crimea, whose annexation by Russia last year sparked Western sanctions, has managed to slip into Poland because of the way his name was transcribed on the banned list.
Russian President Vladimir Putin burnished his action man image on Tuesday by diving down in a mini-submarine to explore a shipwreck off the coast of the Crimea peninsula that Moscow seized from Ukraine last year.
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said Friday that his French counterpart Francois Hollande and German Chancellor Angel Merkel had pressed him to ensure partial self-rule for the pro-Russian separatist east.
The EU on Friday prolonged until 2016 a sanctions package over Russia`s illegal annexation of Crimea, days after rolling over a series of damaging punitive measures against Moscow for its role in the Ukraine crisis.
One Ukrainian coastguard was killed, five were injured and their commander remained unaccounted for on Sunday after their cutter hit a mine planted in the bay of the strategic eastern port of Mariupol, officials said.
Russia has imposed an entry ban on 89 European politicians and military leaders, according to a list seen by Reuters, a move that has angered Europe and worsened its standoff with the West over Moscow`s role in the Ukraine conflict.