A top US diplomat has apologized after using an expletive to refer to the EU in a bugged phone call with the US ambassador to Kiev. The audio was uploaded to YouTube and Washington has accused Russia of releasing it.
The six-month sanctions extension hits Russia's financial, energy and defense industries and comes amid heightened tensions with Ukraine. NATO has also pledged its support for Ukraine.
The chancellor told her Russian counterpart that measures needed to be taken to ensure "smooth passage" through the Kerch Strait. But stopping conflict in the Sea of Azov wasn't the only thing the two leaders discussed.
America will survive beyond Donald Trump's presidency — and so should the trans-Atlantic relationship, writes Romanian analyst Radu Magdin. With its complex geopolitics, Eastern Europe plays a key role in this context.
Luhansk rebels handed over 40 prisoners to Ukrainian authorities in what the separatist officials described as a "goodwill gesture." All of the prisoners were already in jail when the conflict started in 2014.
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