West is ‘Really Weak’ vs Russia, Says Ukrainian Diplomat; Crisis Has Displaced Over 1M People

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By Esther Tanquintic-Misa | September 3, 2014 2:50 PM EST

Despite their combined superpowers and so-called technological advancements in military warfare, a Ukrainian diplomat has labelled the western leaders as "really weak" against Russia in the face of the latter's aggression into his country.

Reuters
U.S. President Barack Obama delivers a statement from Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts, during his vacation August 20, 2014. Obama on Wednesday vowed that the United States will not be swayed from airstrikes against Islamic State after the group beheaded an American journalist, an act he said is proof that the militants stand for no religion. Obama's response to the execution of James Foley marked his strongest condemnation yet of Islamic State militants, and he gave no sign of a pause in U.S. targeting of militant positions in Iraq.

This, as the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) revealed on Tuesday that the conflict in Ukraine had displaced over one million people.

Obviously exasperated, Olexander Scherba, ambassador-at-large at the Ukrainian foreign ministry, told BBC HARDtalk's Stephen Sackur the fall of Ukraine and the loss of its sovereignty in Russian hands "will be the start of the moral decay of the European ideals."

If Russia succeeds dismembering Ukraine, this will surely forever haunt the West, he said.

On Monday, Ukrainians said the war raging inside their homeland is no longer just theirs against Russia, but they are fighting a war on behalf of Europe.

Ukraine has practically pleaded the West to supply it with arms and artillery machines so it can better position itself against the invading Russians, but its plea have fallen on deaf ears with the EU countries divided on how to respond.

Read: Ukraine Crisis: Russia vs US, EU.... And the Winner is Actually China

UNHCR said that in the past three weeks alone, the number of people displaced inside Ukraine has already more than doubled. As of Sept 1, there are at least 260,000 people estimated to have been displaced, compared to 117,000 as of Aug 5.

Majority or 94 per cent of those displaced come from eastern Ukraine. But the UNHCR believes the actual number of people displaced is higher because many are staying with families and friends but chose not to register with the authorities.

The ongoing Ukraine crisis will not only have devastating humanitarian consequences but also potentially destabilise the whole region if it remains unstopped, UN refugee chief Antonio Guterres said in a statement.

Since it started in April, the spiralling crisis in eastern Ukraine has claimed over 2,600 lives.

"After the lessons of the Balkans, it is hard to believe a conflict of these proportions could unfold on the European continent," he added.

The EU and Washington are "disappointing... and really weak" against a "power drunk" nuclear nation, Scherba said.

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(Photo: Reuters / Kevin Lamarque)
U.S. President Barack Obama delivers a statement from Martha's Vineyard, Massachusetts, during his vacation August 20, 2014. Obama on Wednesday vowed that the United States will not be swayed from airstrikes against Islamic State after the group beheaded an American journalist, an act he said is proof that the militants stand for no religion. Obama's response to the execution of James Foley marked his strongest condemnation yet of Islamic State militants, and he gave no sign of a pause in U.S. targeting of militant positions in Iraq.
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