US ‘deeply concerned’ by Ukraine attacks: Obama


New Delhi: On asking about the issue, US President Barack Obama expressed deep concern Sunday over ceasefire violations in Ukraine, after rocket strikes on a government-held port killed 30 people.

“We are deeply concerned about the latest break in the ceasefire,” Obama said at a press conference in New Delhi, blaming “separatists with Russian backing, Russian equipment, Russian financing, Russian training and Russian troops”.

Saturday’s attack on a residential district and a market in Mariupol has heightened global pressure on Russia to rein in the insurgents and halt a nine-month conflict that has already killed 5,000 people.

Obama pledged to “ratchet up the pressure on Russia” in cooperation with US allies including Europe, saying he would look at all options short of military confrontation.

“If Mr Putin and if Russia are hell-bent on engaging in military conflicts, their military is more powerful than Ukraine’s,” he said.