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March 18, 2014 | By Maeve Reston
Former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said Tuesday that the U.S. must do more to encourage energy independence in Europe to guard against further aggression by Russian President Vladimir Putin. "What Putin did is illegal; it is against international law,” Clinton said during a speech in Montreal a short time after Putin signed treaties with Crimea's Moscow-backed leaders appropriating the region, including its naval port of Sevastopol, after a weekend referendum.
March 17, 2014 | By Kathleen Hennessey and Christi Parsons
WASHINGTON -- President Obama has signed an order that imposes sanctions on seven Russian government officials, including a deputy prime minister and one of President Vladimir Putin's closest advisers. In a statement, the White House said Russia's incursion in Crimea undermined "democratic processes and institutions in Ukraine; threaten its peace, security, stability, sovereignty, and territorial integrity. " The sanctions are intended to "impose costs on named individuals who wield influence in the Russian government and those responsible for the deteriorating situation in Ukraine," the White House added.
March 17, 2014 | By David Wharton
Russian President Vladimir Putin -- who has a lot on his mind these days -- took a few minutes Monday to thank his country's athletes for their dominant performance in the Sochi Paralympics. The Russian team won 30 golds and a total of 80 medals during the two-week competition. The next closest team, Ukraine, had five golds and 25 total. "Thank you very much for the inspiration that you have given millions of people, who are ready to do as you do and not just engage in sport and fitness, but set the highest goals in life," the president was quoted as saying on the Kremlin's website.
March 17, 2014 | By Sergei L. Loiko
NOVOFEDOROVKA, Ukraine - As Crimea was declaring its independence from Ukraine on Monday and looking forward to once again becoming part of mother Russia, thousands of Ukrainian servicemen stationed on the peninsula were pondering hard options and awaiting instructions from Kiev. If some Crimeans were jubilant over the results of a Sunday referendum backing independence, the members of the Ukrainian brigade with a navy air unit stationed in this small town were full of concerns. They faced options that could forever change their families' lives, leaving some to choose whether to betray their homeland, their oath of allegiance and their officers' honor, said Col. Igor Bedzay, the unit commander.
March 16, 2014 | By Lisa Mascaro
WASHINGTON - Top U.S. officials warned against further Russian military aggression into eastern Ukraine as Americans and Western allies prepared to slap more sanctions on Russian officials and to protect the new government in Kiev. Sanctions could be announced as soon as Monday, officials said, and would send a message to Russian President Vladimir Putin following Sunday's vote on a Russian-backed referendum to split Crimea from Ukraine. The U.S. rejected the vote and top lawmakers called it a sham.
March 16, 2014 | By Paul Richter
WASHINGTON - Supporters of Russian President Vladimir Putin expect to savor victory as residents of Crimea vote Sunday on splitting from Ukraine. But Western officials and analysts increasingly feel that in the long run, Russians will come to see their nation's military and political move into Crimea as a mistake. Two weeks after Russian forces entered the peninsula en masse, Russia's stock market and economic data have started to signal trouble - the start of what could become a lasting pullback by foreign investors.
March 16, 2014 | By Sergei L. Loiko
SIMFEROPOL, Ukraine - In the face of widespread international condemnation and the threat of punishing new sanctions on the Russian government, voters in Crimea appeared Sunday to overwhelmingly back a measure to break away from Ukraine and become part of Russia. Passage was expected to deepen the rift between Russia and the West, where such a move is widely seen as a blatant theft of Ukrainian territory. "In this century, we are long past the days when the international community will stand quietly by while one country forcibly seizes the territory of another," White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said in a statement Sunday that called on other nations to "take concrete steps to impose costs" on Moscow.
March 15, 2014
Re "Insane? Hardly," Opinion, March 11 The Duke of Wellington said it best. When asked about Napoleon's propensity to always go on the attack, he said: "A conqueror is like a cannonball … he can only go forward. Once he rebounds, his career is over. " So it is with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Whether bullying members of Pussy Riot or cowing his opposition, Putin can only be dissuaded by force. All the sanctions in the world will only give him another excuse to go on the offensive.
March 14, 2014 | By David Wharton
One man's glitch is another man's gold. Immediately after the producers of the opening ceremony at the Sochi Games suffered their famous malfunction -- four electric snowflakes blossoming into Olympic rings while a fifth remained closed -- a Russian businessman began using the image in advertisements. Now the RBC Daily in Russia reports that Dmitry Medvedev, who is no relation to his country's prime minister, wants to trademark the unintended logo. Medvedev called the four rings "great public relations" and has applied to a Russian patent office because he worries about being sued by Olympics officials.
March 14, 2014 | By Henry Chu
LONDON -- U.S. Secretary of State John F. Kerry and his Russian counterpart have launched a new round of talks to try to cool down the crisis over Moscow's de facto occupation of Ukraine's Crimean peninsula and the secession referendum planned there this weekend. Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov began their meeting Friday morning at the U.S. ambassador's residence in London amid pessimism that either Moscow or the West will budge in possibly their worst confrontation over Europe since the end of the Cold War. The United States and the European Union condemn the takeover of Crimea by pro-Russian forces and say the plebiscite Sunday on whether to withdraw from Ukraine and join Russia is illegitimate.
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