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Pro-Russian protesters in Ukraine reject peace deal

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The world has been watching the slowly unfolding crisis in Ukraine for several weeks now. While many are concerned about the prospects for armed conflict in the region, diplomats have been working around the clock to avoid this outcome. Diplomats representing the international community recently reached a high profile agreement designed to slow down the escalating tensions between Russia and Ukraine. Unfortunately, a Friday story by CNN reveals that Russian supporters in eastern Ukraine have vowed not to back down.

This story places a major damper of the prospects for avoiding war in Ukraine. The deal reached by diplomats called for the armed rebels in Ukraine to surrender any buildings that had been seized and to disarm. To placate concerns by protesters that they would face legal prosecution after disarming, the agreement grants amnesty to all protesters that surrender by a Friday deadline.

However, on Friday, the leader of the pro-Russians in Donetsk, Denis Pushilin, declared that the protesters would disarm when the interim government in Kiev resigns. Not surprisingly, most experts do not expect this to happen. While the international community struggles to de-escalate the growing crisis, experts acknowledge that the effectiveness of these agreements will depend on how quickly they are implemented on the ground.

A Thursday story by CNN revealed that John Kerry backed this consensus. When the agreement was announced, John Kerry largely echoed these sentiments. Currently, the implementation of the latest attempt at a peaceful resolution has been minimal. However, in the coming days, it would not be surprising if activity in the embattled regions peaks.

Do you think that the international community has addressed this growing crisis in an effective manner? Many have criticized the west for its seemingly weak response to what some consider to be blatant Russian aggression. What would you do to deter Russia from annexing more of Ukraine?

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