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Ukraine crisis overshadows start of G20 summit

Ukraine crisis overshadows start of G20 summit
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All eyes are on Vladimir Putin with the Ukraine crisis overshadowing talks on global economic growth at the G20 summit in Brisbane..

Fellow leaders have raised the spectre of further sanctions against Russia, accused of sending soldiers and weapons into eastern Ukraine to help separatist rebels – charges it denies. This as September’s truce in Minsk continues to be violated on a daily basis.

“The world seems to be divided into a Cold War style,” UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon told a news conference in Brisbane.

“I sincerely hope that all these pending issues should be resolved in accordance with the Minsk protocol and memorandum which was agreed upon and even facilitated by Russia, the European Union and the Americans.”

“While this is not on the G20 agenda, the situation and recent military escalation continue to be of utmost concern,” said European Council President Herman Van Rompuy, who is also attending the event.

“The European Union continues to believe that there can only be a political solution to the crisis. We will continue to use all diplomatic tools, including sanctions, at our disposal.”

Despite the looming showdown over Ukraine between leaders of the world’s biggest economies, G20 host Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbot wants to keep the focus on boosting growth, fireproofing the global banking system and closing tax loopholes for giant multinationals.