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World leaders look for a diplomatic solution to Ukraine crisis

by AirTalk®

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US Secretary of State John Kerry and EU Foreign Policy Chief Catherine Ashton speak during a press conference at the Intercontinental hotel on April 17, 2014 in Geneva, Switzerland. Leaders from EU, US, Ukraine and Russia are meeting today in Geneva to deescalate the crisis in Ukraine and to find a political solution. Harold Cunningham/Getty Images

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry announced that world leaders have come to an agreement on how to defuse the crisis in Ukraine.

Kerry met with his Russian counterpart, Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov, and top officials from Ukraine and the European Union in Geneva on Thursday to find a diplomatic solution. Kerry said the participants agreed on several points including requirements that all illegally armed groups must disarm, all illegally occupied buildings, streets and squares be vacated and Kiev will grant amnesty to protesters and occupiers with the exception of those found guilty of capital offenses.

In a move that Kerry called a final "concrete step", Kerry also said that the OSCE special monitoring mission will undertake a special role assisting Ukrainian authorities to immediately de-escalate the situation.

The agreement could hit the pause button on proposed economic sanctions that the US and the EU had planned to impose on Russia if no solution was agreed upon. But Kerry did not mince words when making it clear to Russia that any further escalation would not be tolerated. If Russia continued to provoke Ukraine, there would be no choice but to impose further costs, he said.

Is the agreement a slap on the wrist for Russia? Should the protesters and occupiers be granted amnesty?


Will Pomeranz, Deputy Director of the Kennan Institute at the Wilson Center

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