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Kerry Meets Ukrainian Leaders In Kyiv

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry walks with U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Geoffrey Pyatt (front right) at Boryspil International Airport in Kyiv.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has arrived in Kyiv, where he is expected to discuss ways of ending Ukraine’s continuing war against Russia-backed separatists in the east of the country.

Kerry’s visit on July 7 comes ahead of a NATO summit in Warsaw that Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko will also attend in the hope of securing support and assistance.

The deputy head of Poroshenko's administration, Kostyantyn Yeliseyev, was quoted by the AFP news agency as saying he expected the meetings with Kerry to focus on "the issue of global security, regional security, and of course the issue of Ukraine's cooperation with NATO."

Yeliseyev said Ukraine hoped to receive further assistance from the United States and other allies in upgrading its outdated and underfunded armed forces. He said Kyiv also wanted to discuss the peace process between Kyiv and the separatists.

Kerry visited Georgia on July 6 where he underscored Washington’s commitment to supporting the ex-Soviet nation in its long-running standoff with two separatist regions backed by Russia.

The two countries signed a new military cooperation agreement during Kerry visit to Georgia -- his first to the Caucasus nation as secretary of state.

Based on reporting by AFP, Interfax