US Vice President Joe Biden will visit Ukraine later this month to meet with government and citizen leaders.
The White House said Biden will travel to the capital Kiev on April 22 for a visit that will focus on the international community’s efforts to help stabilise and strengthen Ukraine’s economy.
The White House said on Saturday that Biden also will assist Ukraine in its efforts aimed at constitutional reform, decentralisation, anti-corruption, and free and fair presidential elections set for May 25.
As Ukraine deals with possible bankruptcy, uprisings in the east by pro-Russian separatists and Russian troops deployed along the Ukrainian border have unsettled the country.
Biden’s trip may overlap slightly with a trip to Asia scheduled by President Barack Obama.
Meanwhile, US Secretary of State John Kerry has expressed strong concern that attacks by armed militants in eastern Ukraine have been orchestrated and synchronised.
The US State Department said Kerry expressed his concern on Saturday in a phone call with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.
In a statement, the State Department said that Kerry made clear that if Russia does not take steps to de-escalate in eastern Ukraine and move its troops back from Ukraine’s border, there would be additional consequences.
Russia’s Itar-Tass news agency, citing the foreign ministry, said Kerry “could not give any concrete facts” to back his concerns.
Itar-Tass reported that Lavrov warned Kerry that if the Ukrainian government uses force against the protesters, it could derail international talks on the crisis set for next week.