Trump to speak to Poroshenko as Ukraine unrest surges

The phone conversation comes as the death toll hit 35 following a week of clashes between Ukrainian troops and Russian-backed insurgents in a level of bloodshed unseen in the eastern war zone since 2015.

Trump to speak to Poroshenko as Ukraine unrest surges

World Bulletin / News Desk

US President Donald Trump was to hold his first talks with Ukraine's leader on Saturday as a surge in fighting killed dozens refocusing world attention on the conflict in Europe's backyard.

The violence erupted as Trump seeks to build a friendship with Russia's Vladimir Putin with some analysts linking the escalation to the potential thaw in ties.

The scheduled call -- which will take place in the evening -- will see Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko seeking to win assurances of Washington's continued diplomatic and non-lethal military support.

It comes a week after the new US leader spoke to Putin.

Russia and Ukraine along with the rebels on Wednesday signed up to calls for a ceasefire and the withdrawal of heavy weapons from the flashpoint town Avdiivka by Sunday.

But the demand for the shooting to stop has not halted the violence and so far there has been little sign of the big guns being pulled back around the Kiev-held industrial town of 25,000 at the centre of the fighting.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 04 Şubat 2017, 16:13