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French, German, Polish ministers to travel to Ukraine Thursday

Source: Reuters - Wed, 19 Feb 2014 16:05 GMT
Author: Reuters
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(Adds Kerry quotes)

PARIS, Feb 19 (Reuters) - The foreign ministers of France, Germany and Poland will travel to Kiev on Thursday to assess the situation before a meeting in Brussels to decide whether to impose sanctions on Ukraine, French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said on Wednesday.

"With my Polish and German colleagues we have decided to go to Kiev tomorrow morning ... to gather the latest information before the meeting in Brussels," Fabius said alongside U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry.

Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich accused pro-European opposition leaders on Wednesday of trying to seize power by force after at least 26 people died in the worst violence since the former Soviet republic gained independence.

"President Yanukovich has the opportunity to make a choice. The choice is between protecting the people that he serves ... and (the) choice for compromise and dialogue versus violence and mayhem," Kerry said.

"We are talking about the possibility of sanctions or other steps with our friends in Europe and elsewhere in order to try to create the environment for compromise." (Reporting By John Irish and Arshad Mohammed; editing by Mark John)

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