UK & World News

  • 15 June 2014, 14:24

Russia Blames Ukraine Police Over Embassy Riot

Russia has accused Ukrainian police of doing nothing to stop an attack on the Russian Embassy in Kiev.

Several diplomatic cars were overturned and damaged by angry protesters who also threw paint, eggs and stones at the embassy building as a large demonstration turned into a riot.

Russia condemned Kiev police's "inaction" as "a grave violation of Ukraine's international obligations".

Washington also delivered Kiev a rare rebuke by urging "authorities to meet their Vienna Convention obligations to provide adequate security".

Acting foreign minister Andrii Deshchytsia visited the area and said the Ukrainian government "will do everything" to avoid exacerbation of relations between Russia and Ukraine.

It was not the first protest outside the Russian Embassy, but previous demos have been peaceful.

The attack came after pro-Russia separatists shot down a Ukrainian military transport plane on Saturday, killing all 49 crew and troops on board in the east of the country.

It marked a significant setback for the Ukrainian forces, which have struggled to suppress an armed insurgency by opponents of the new government led by President Petro Poroshenko.

Mr Poroshenko, who spoke about a peace plan in his inaugural address, has announced a national day of mourning today following the army plane attack.

A commander in the rebel-held eastern city of Lugansk, where the plane was shot down, showed pieces of the Ilyushin-76 transporter's charred debris in a wheat field a dozen kilometres (eight miles) outside the airport.

The man known to his unit as Mudzhakhed (Sacred Fighter) said the plane tried to dump fuel after the rebels hit its engines.

The four-engine transporter crashed on its second landing approach after being hit by heavy machine gun fire.

Mr Poroshenko vowed to deal the rebels "an adequate response" after the attack and signalled an imminent intensification of an offensive being waged against the insurgents.

Meanwhile, the US accused Russia of helping the insurgency by sending tanks and rocket launchers to the pro-Moscow rebels in the former Soviet republic  - a charge the Kremlin denied.

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