US Vice President Joe Biden has lashed out at Russia, criticising what he describes as its occupation of Ukrainian sovereign territory.
It came as he addressed Kyiv’s parliament.
Biden also warned of the consequences if Ukraine doesn’t implement reforms and cut corruption.
“Today Russia is occupying sovereign Ukrainian territory. Let me be crystal clear – the United States does not, will not, never will recognise Russia’s attempt to annex the Crimea,” said Biden.
“But in addition, you also have a battle. An historic battle against corruption. Ukraine cannot afford for the people to lose hope again.”
Disagreements between the government and parliament are stoking concerns that Ukraine could stumble in its reform drive.
But Biden’s address seems to have been well received.
“He (Biden) mentioned oligarchs who are using the judiciary system now, who are not paying taxes and also corrupted people in the government and in the parliament who think about their own interest in