EU, Ukrainian envoys discuss reports of Russian buildup

By Talha Yavuz

KYIV, Ukraine (AA) – Top diplomats from the European Union and Ukraine discussed Russia on Sunday amid a reported buildup of Russian forces near Ukraine's eastern border.

“Key issue of our call today with @JosepBorrellF was Russia’s aggravation of the security situation,” Ukraine's Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba wrote on Twitter, referring to the EU’s foreign policy chief.

“‘EU is behind you,’ Josep Borrell said, expressing support for Ukraine’s sovereignty & territorial integrity, and invited me to take part in EU Foreign Affairs Council on April 19th,” Kuleba added.

For his part, Borrell wrote on Twitter: "Following with severe concern the Russian military activity surrounding Ukraine."

"Unwavering EU support for [Ukraine’s] sovereignty & territorial integrity. Will further discuss with @DmytroKuleba and EU Foreign Ministers at next FAC," he added.

The call comes as Russia has reportedly amassed its forces near Ukraine's east, where it is supporting separatist rebels that have waged a bloody insurgency since 2014.

Along with militarily supporting separatist rebels in Ukraine’s Donetsk and Luhansk regions, which are collectively known as Donbas, Russia in 2014 also seized and annexed Ukraine's Crimean Peninsula after sending troops there and staging a referendum. The vote has been widely dismissed by the West as window dressing to provide cover for Russia's actions.

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