Russia says EU 'against peace' as US backs new sanctions

The Russian Foreign Ministry said the European Union has "made its choice against" a peace process in Ukraine by approving tougher sanctions against Russia.

President Barack Obama said the United States will join the EU in imposing sanctions on Russia's financial, energy and defence sectors after Moscow sent troops into eastern Ukraine last month.

David Cameron has spoken to European leaders and agreed to push ahead with the sanctions by the end of the week, his spokesman has confirmed.

After the announcement the Russian rouble reached a new historic low against the dollar.

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Poroshenko: I hope meeting with Putin will bring peace

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko at the Minsk summoit. Credit: RTV

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has said that peace in Ukraine could be the result of a meeting today with Russian President Vladimir Putin at the Minsk summit.

"I sincerely hope that the result of today's meeting - and I think it won't be the only meeting, just the first one - will be peace," He said.

"The Bible says that peacemakers are blessed, so if we with our colleagues are able to reach an agreement today which would bring peace to Ukrainian land I think it would be a pivotal event."

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