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UK pulls out of preparatory talks for G8 summit in Sochi

Britain has pulled out of preparatory talks due to be held in the coming days for the G8 summit in Sochi over Russia's military activity in Ukraine, Foreign Office officials have said.

Latest updates on Ukraine as the story breaks here.

Russian troops have surrounded military bases across Crimea. Credit: John Angier /ITV News

Prime Minister David Cameron said no ministers would be attending from the UK in the wake of the crisis.

Read: Cameron: Wrong for UK Ministers to attend Sochi Games

More: Ukraine Navy chief 'defects' to Crimea region


Hague condemns 'any act of aggression' in Ukraine

Foreign Secretary William Hague has said that Russian action in Ukraine is a "potentially grave threat" to sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity.

He added:


We oppose decision to deploy Russian troops on Ukrainian soil against wishes of #Ukraine gov and condemn any act of aggression


UK has called urgent meeting of UNSC on #Ukraine today and we support emergency meeting of EU Foreign Affairs Council


We support Ukrainian gov's request for urgent consultations in accordance with 1994 Budapest Memorandum signed by UK, US, Russia, #Ukraine

Hague: UK and US on the same page over Ukraine

Foreign Secretary William Hague said the United Kingdom and the US "see the crisis in Ukraine in exactly the same way" after meeting his American counterpart John Kerry in Washington.

Mr Hague said that the territorial integrity of the country is extremely important and said both he and Mr Kerry appeal on the new Ukrainian leaders to form an "inclusive government."

Read: Ukraine's leader expresses concerns over 'separatism'

William Hague and John Kerry to discuss Ukraine

William Hague is due to hold talks with US Secretary of State John Kerry about the ongoing situation in Ukraine, after Russia questioned the legitimacy of the country's interim leadership.

William Hague is due to discuss the situation in Ukraine with John Kerry. Credit: PA Wire

Mr Hague has warned that Ukraine faces imminent economic collapse without support from the international community and Washington, and the Foreign Secretary is due to meet representatives from the International Monetary Fund in Washington to discuss the country's financial plight.

Russian prime minister Dmitry Medvedev said authorities in the country had taken power as a result of "armed mutiny".

An arrest warrant has been issued for ousted president Viktor Yanukovich who has reportedly fled to a pro-Russian area.

Read: Hollande asks Putin to back Ukraine's transition


Foreign Secretary: Ukraine still facing many dangers

There are still many dangers for Ukraine after its parliament voted to dismiss President Viktor Yakunovich, the Foreign Secretary has said.

Speaking to the BBC's Andrew Marr Show, William Hague said: "The political situation, even among the opposition is very complex. It's clearly been a very divided country, the position and whereabouts of Mr Yakunovich is not clear, so there are many dangers.

Foreign Secretary William Hague warns Ukraine still facing many dangers. Credit: BBC/Andrew Marr Show

"They need an economic programme that the rest of us through the International Monetary Fund and other institutions can support so they can stave of an even more serious economic situation", he said.

Asked if there was a chance that Russia would intervene, Mr Hague said: "We are talking to the Russians. It's very important for us to try and continue to persuade Russia that this needn't not be a zero-sum game [...] It's not in the interests of Russia".

Hague: Ukraine must have help to access vital funding

Foreign Secretary William Hague has spoken to Poland's Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sikorski about the ongoing situation in Ukraine:


Spoke to @sikorskiradek about #Ukraine. Agreed international community needs to help Ukraine access vital financing for future stability

Earlier today, Mr Hague said he and his German counterpart Frank-Walter Steinmeier had agreed to support a new government in Ukraine.

Hague: End 'barbaric' use of barrel bombs in Syria

The "barbaric" use of barrel bombs in Syria must end, William Hague has said after the UN Security Council backed a resolution calling for humanitarian access to Syria to help relieve the plight of civilians caught up in the crisis.

The resolution demands an end to indiscriminate aerial bombardment and the immediate lifting of sieges by both forces loyal to President Bashar Assad and the opposition.

This is a vital step towards ensuring that humanitarian aid reaches millions of Syrians in desperate need of help, including those who have been denied their basic human right to food and medical aid.

The adoption of this resolution, on the initiative of the UK and our close partners, sends a clear message that the Assad regime cannot be allowed to starve hundreds of thousands of its own people into submission.

We will not hesitate to return to the Security Council if the Assad regime fails to meet the demands in this resolution.

– Foreign Secretary William Hague
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