Rebel forces fought their way into the strategic city of Debaltseve in Eastern Ukraine pushing out Ukraine’s military. CCTV’s Stephanie Freid filed this report from Kiev in the Ukraine.
Ukraine President Poroshenko calls for UN PeacekeepersRebel forces fought their way into the strategic city of Debaltseve in Eastern Ukraine pushing out Ukraine’s military. CCTV’s Stephanie Freid filed this report from Kiev in the Ukraine.
Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko called the offensive a breach of the ceasefire deal struck between the two sides last week. Poroshenko is calling for U.N. Peacekeepers to hit the frontline between Russia and Ukraine and take care of the situation, war weary president insists Russia cannot participate.
Poroshenko said Thursday it is important to send a peacekeeping contingent to Ukraine to ensure a ceasefire is properly observed. Russia, as a permanent member of the UN Security Council, has the power to veto any peacekeeping mission.
During four-way negotiations over the phone Thursday between President Poroshenko, Russian president Vladimir Putin, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President François Hollande all parties agreed to full implementation of the ceasefire agreement and European sponsored OSCE (Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe) monitors to be put in place in order to oversee its implementation.
It’s not the first time the sides have agreed to a ceasefire. According to Ukrainian military reports there was rebel shelling on Ukraine’s military positions near the Azov seaside town of Mariupol the same day the leaders spoke.
The rebel takeover of Debaltseve is a tremendous strategic gain as the town links rebel held cities Donetsk and Luhansk. Ukraine soldiers surrounded and under siege for days were visibly relieved to be out.
“We were successful. Our tanks were driving behind us, the guys did great, they worked well and destroyed one of their tanks. We drove further and managed to break out, all is good now,” an Ukrainian solider said.