MOSCOW — Ukraine’s interim leaders said Monday that the country will need $35 billion in foreign aid over the next two years to avert default and called for an international donors’ conference to craft a rescue plan.

The appeal by acting Finance Minister Yuri Kolobov followed by a day his Russian counterpart’s announcement that Moscow would be cutting off further aid and loan supports to Ukraine until its new transitional leadership is in place and it is clear with whom the Kremlin will be dealing.

Opposition leaders, who have been in control of Kiev since a European Union-brokered pact to quell last week’s violence was signed Friday, have said the new slate of ministers could be decided as early as Tuesday. The new government is unlikely to be as friendly to Moscow, though, as was that of President Viktor Yanukovich, who has been stripped of his office by parliament and has fled Kiev for the Russian-leaning east.

Group of 20 finance ministers met in Sydney, Australia, over the weekend and pledged help for Ukraine once its provisional leadership is in place. Political leaders from the United States, the EU and Russia have urged the opposition figures now in control of Kiev and western Ukraine cities to put together a genuinely inclusive cabinet to represent all segments of Ukraine’s badly divided population.

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The Associated Press

— In his first reaction to the Ukraine crisis, Russian President Vladimir Putin has ordered the government to consider humanitarian assistance to the Russian-speaking region of Crimea and talk to the West about bailing out Ukraine.

The move was announced by Putin spokesman Dmitry Peskov in a statement carried by Russian news agencies Thursday. No further details were provided except that assistance to Crimea could be offered by some Russian provinces.

 

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Irish Times News

Ukraine requests financial support from IMF

Christine Lagarde to send fact-finding team to Kiev in coming days

Christine Lagarde said a team would go to Kiev to carry out an independent assessment of the economic situation in Ukraine in the coming days. Photograph: Ian Waldie/BloombergChristine Lagarde said a team would go to Kiev to carry out an independent assessment of the economic situation in Ukraine in the coming days. Photograph: Ian Waldie/Bloomberg

Thu, Feb 27, 2014, 15:12

Ukrainian officials today notified the International Monetary Fund of the country’s request for financial support, IMF managing director Christine Lagarde said in a statement.

“We are ready to respond and, in the coming days, will send an IMF fact-finding team to Kiev to undertake a preliminary dialogue with the authorities,” Ms Lagarde said in a statement.

“This will enable the IMF to make its usual technical, independent assessment of the economic situation in Ukraine and, at the same time, begin to discuss with the authorities the policy reforms that could form the basis of a Fund-supported program.”

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