WASHINGTON, August 20, 2014 —
Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel today spoke via telephone with Ukrainian Minister of Defense Valeriy Heletey and discussed Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoygu’s recent remarks noting that the Russian aid convoy to Ukraine was not a military intervention, Pentagon Press Secretary Navy Rear Adm. John Kirby said in a statement.
Kirby’s statement reads as follows:
“Secretary Hagel spoke today by phone with Ukrainian Minister of Defense Valeriy Heletey.
“Secretary Hagel relayed Minister Shoygu’s recent remarks on the Russian aid convoy, and Minister Shoygu’s “guarantee” that the aid convoy was not a military intervention. Secretary Hagel conveyed that he told Minister Shoygu Russia’s vehicles and forces along the border continued to escalate tensions and stressed that any discussions about potential ceasefire agreements must include Ukraine.
“Minister Heletey reported increased violence in Ukraine’s east as a result of Russia’s ongoing supply of weapons and personnel into Ukraine, and spoke about recent attacks in which innocent civilians were killed and wounded.
“Finally, Secretary Hagel and Minister Heletey discussed the status of ongoing deliveries of United States military assistance to Ukraine. Minister Heletey thanked the secretary for the continued assistance of the United States.”