| USWorld

Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Separatists lose faith in Russia

Email Newsletters

Sign up for one of our email newsletters.

Daily Photo Galleries

By The Associated Press
Wednesday, July 9, 2014, 6:21 p.m.

DONETSK, Ukraine — A top figure in Ukraine's separatist insurgency said on Wednesday he is losing hope for action by Russian forces and blamed Russian tycoons for dissuading Moscow from military intervention.

Pavel Gubarev, the self-proclaimed governor of the rebel Donetsk People's Republic, also said there is a split in rebel ranks and his organization no longer controls the murky Vostok Battalion of fighters who man key checkpoints on the outskirts of the Donetsk region's capital city.

After Ukrainian forces drove separatists out of their stronghold city of Slovyansk over the weekend, Ukrainian officials said forces would aim for a blockade of Donetsk city.

At a news conference, Gubarev said: “We would like to receive help in the form of Russian forces. But we are realists and understand that's impossible.”

Rebels in the Donetsk region and the adjacent Luhansk region have repeatedly called for Russia to send in “peacekeeping” troops as the fight against them intensifies. Russia has shown no inclination to do so, and officials have said that a peacekeeping mission could take place only with U.N. authorization.

Gubarev suggested that Russian tycoons are opposed to military action, fearing their businesses would be affected. Russia already has been hit with Western sanctions for its annexation of Crimea from Ukraine in March and for allegedly fomenting the unrest in eastern Ukraine, in which more than 400 people have reportedly been killed. Sending forces into Ukraine would almost certainly prompt even harsher sanctions.

“Their selfish interests are understandable,” Gubarev said.

Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.



Show commenting policy

Most-Read World

  1. In Uganda, Pope Francis pays tribute to nation’s martyrs
  2. Suicide bomber targets crowd of Shiites in Nigeria
  3. Civilian officers slain by gunmen in southern Mexico
  4. France hails 130 victims of Paris terrorist attacks
  5. Russia scoffs at alliance with West on Syria
  6. Watchdog counts $1 billion wasted in Afghanistan
  7. Paris nurse recalls realization that he was giving CPR to suicide bomber
  8. Pope’s message received warmly as he arrives in Kenya
  9. Slaying in Venezuela spurs fears of political violence
  10. Pakistani doctor who led CIA to bin Laden stuck in prison
  11. Mali attackers struck luxury Radisson Blu hotel during security switch