Tillerson talks tough on Russian Federation, vows United States support for Ukraine

"It is necessary for Russian Federation to take the first steps to de-escalate the situation in the eastern part of Ukraine", Tillerson told reporters at a joint news conference in Kiev with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko.

In 2014, the European Union and the United States introduced several rounds of anti-Russia sanctions over Moscow's alleged involvement in the internal crisis in Ukraine.

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on Friday named a former North Atlantic Treaty Organisation ambassador and National Security Council director as the United States' special envoy to Ukraine.

He added, "I think the point was made that this was an issue that really has the American people quite concerned and again it, too, stands as an obstacle to our ability to improve our relationship between the United States and Russian Federation, and it needs to be addressed in terms of how we assure the American people that interference in our elections will not occur by Russian Federation or anyone else".

U.S. Secretary of state arrived on Sunday with his delegation to the Ukrainian presidential administration in Central Kiev, Poroshenko met Tillerson, they shook hands, and went to talks in the administration building.

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Earlier, the USA state Department reported that the head of Department Rex Tillerson July 9, will pay a working visit to Kiev to meet with Poroshenko.

In surprisingly blunt language just two days after presidents Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin met in Germany, Tillerson said Russian Federation should use its influence with separatists in Ukraine's east to fully restore an oft-violated truce, end harassment and attacks on global monitors and pull back heavy weaponry to lines agreed upon under a two-year-old accord known as the Minsk Agreement.

Speaking to a group of reform advocates at the U.S. ambassador's residence, Tillerson praised Ukraine's progress in combating corruption but made clear that more must be accomplished.

It was unclear how the Russians might react to Mr. Tillerson's comments insisting that Moscow restore Ukraine's territorial integrity.

The Secretary appointed a special representative for Ukraine last week, in an effort to further involve the U.S.in the region.

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Tillerson said the United States remains committed to brokering a peaceful solution in Ukraine.

When asked about the meeting on Sunday, Tillerson said, "In all candidness we did not expect an answer other than the one we received".

Rasmussen has stressed that Ukraine's security is NATO's security, and "many of the challenges we face today - from election interference to cyber security - are areas where Ukraine has significant experience in countering".

"Ukraine has come a long way", he said.

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