Can catastrophe be avoided in Ukraine?

“The world’s newest country was born” last Sunday, but seems destined to “have a brief lifespan”, says Kim Sengupta in The Independent. No sooner had the People’s Republic of Donetsk declared independence from Ukraine than separatist leader Denis Pushilin was asking Russia to absorb the region.

Meanwhile the Obama administration said that the US would not recognise the “results of the illegal referendums”. The British foreign secretary, William Hague, concurred.

For all its “surreal elements” (the total of the announced yes, no and spoilt votes exceeded 100%), the outcome was “deadly serious”, says The Daily Telegraph. The most populous region [...]

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