December 12, 2013 |
KIEV, Ukraine -- As thousands of pro-European-integration protesters were rebuilding barricades in Kiev's Independence Square which were destroyed the previous day by police, Russian President Vladimir Putin maintained a focus Thursday on Ukraine. Putin, in his annual state of the union address, said that Ukraine's leaders are continuing to consult with Moscow about about post-Soviet economic reintegration. “Even before all these [protests] which we now see in Kiev … Ukraine more than once declared its interest in joining some agreements of the customs union [with Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan]
December 2, 2013 |
KIEV, Ukraine - President Viktor Yanukovich appeared to give ground Monday in the face of massive demonstrations that threatened to hobble his government, seeking to reopen talks with the European Union about forging a closer economic relationship. As protesters declared a general strike and blocked access to the government's headquarters in central Kiev, Yanukovich spoke by phone with European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso to ask whether Ukraine could send a delegation to discuss a previously scuttled free trade agreement, the Interfax-Ukraine news agency reported.
November 29, 2013 |
KIEV, Ukraine -- Protesters took to the streets in Ukraine's capital Friday after President Viktor Yanukovich abandoned plans to sign a trade and association agreement with the European Union in favor of staying within Russia's orbit. As Yanukovich headed home from an EU summit in Lithuania, thousands of mostly young demonstrators converged on Independence Square in downtown Kiev to demand that the president be impeached. Many carried the Ukrainian and European Union flags and brandished posters telling Yanukovich to “Sign or go” and “Go to Siberia.
November 29, 2013 |
KIEV, Ukraine - Ukraine's president faced growing street protests at home Friday after he rejected an agreement to tie his nation's political and economic future to the West, instead keeping intact Ukraine's historical links with Moscow. The news that President Viktor Yanukovich came away from the European Union summit in Lithuania empty-handed angered thousands of mostly young demonstrators who gathered in Kiev's Independence Square, site of massive protests that triggered the Orange Revolution against pro-Russian rule nearly a decade ago, to demand that the president be impeached and the association agreement with the EU be signed.
November 13, 2013 |
Michal Ruminski was 6 when his father took him through a local supermarket here. The store shelves were empty, except for some bottles of vinegar, but that was precisely the point. His father wanted the young boy never to forget the deprivations of living in a backward communist state. Today, streets once patrolled by soldiers and armored vehicles now teem with trendy cafes and tony boutiques, not to mention grocery stores filled to bursting. And Ruminski, now 39, as managing partner of a venture capital firm, can provide his wife and his own 6-year-old son all the comforts of life.
November 6, 2013 |
President Obama is slowly extricating the U.S. from its Bush-era fixation on the Middle East. But he is turning his attention in the wrong direction. Europe, not Asia, should be his main focus. The future of liberal democracy will depend on its ongoing success in its Enlightenment heartland. If it can overcome current troubles and thrive in Europe and the Americas, this will inspire the worldwide democracy movement over the long run. If it fails in the West, no amount of Asian realpolitik will compensate for the collapse.
October 30, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - The expanding transatlantic scandal over U.S. eavesdropping on Europe's leaders and spying on its citizens has begun to strain intelligence relationships and diplomatic ties between allies that call each other best friends, according to diplomats and foreign policy experts. The cascade of embarrassing disclosures is not expected to upend one of President Obama's goals, a proposed transatlantic free-trade agreement that could generate billions of dollars a year, or halt cooperation on top security issues, such as efforts to curb Iran's nuclear program and contain the Syrian civil war. But the documents leaked by former National Security Agency computer specialist Edward Snowden, which on Wednesday exposed a joint U.S.-British spying operation on the Internet, have caused friction in multiple capitals and put the Obama administration on the defensive at home and abroad.
October 25, 2013 |
LONDON -- Distilling their anger over reports of U.S. spying on European citizens and governments, including heads of state, European Union leaders are calling for a meeting with U.S. officials on the matter before the end of the year. In a statement issued by European Council President Herman van Rompuy and posted Friday on the EU's website, the leaders summarized their discussions Thursday on allegations of National Security Agency monitoring of phone traffic across Europe. The statement, supported by leaders of all 28 EU member states, backed a proposal by France and Germany leading to call for direct talks with U.S. officials.
October 25, 2013 |
President Obama has been busy this week taking calls from European leaders who seem really upset that the United States has been spying on them, perhaps to the point of tapping their cellphones. First, Obama heard from French President Francois Hollande. Hollande complained that documents leaked by Edward Snowden, the ex-NSA contractor who is now holed up in Moscow, showed that American intelligence agencies had gathered more than 70 million pieces of data from phone communications in France in just one 30-day period.
October 21, 2013 |
European lawmakers on Monday voted overwhelmingly to approve new data protections aimed at shielding citizens' private communications from the probing eyes of intelligence operatives and commercial snoopers. The first major upgrade in the continent's data privacy regulations in 18 years still faces months of negotiations to assimilate the laws and practices of the European Union's 28 member states. But the 49-3 vote of a European Parliament committee to approve the draft law reflected widespread concern among Europe's 500 million citizens for the privacy of their communications after revelations of massive data surveillance by the U.S. National Security Agency.