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Obama, Cameron discuss Ukraine, welcome observers

March 5, 2014

BOSTON (AP) — The White House says President Barack Obama and British Prime Minister David Cameron agree that Russia’s military presence in Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula is unacceptable and welcome an observer mission in the region by the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe.

The two men spoke Wednesday as Obama flew on Air Force One from Washington to Hartford, Connecticut. The president was pushing for an increase in the minimum wage and later traveled to Boston to attend a Democratic Party fundraising event.

The White House says Russia is already facing reduced confidence from investors for its actions in Ukraine.

The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe sent a team of 35 unarmed military personnel to Crimea on Wednesday at the fledgling government’s request.

Separately, Vice President Joe Biden on Wednesday discussed developments in Ukraine with Latvian President Andris Berzins. The White House said both men, in a phone call, voiced “grave concern” over Russia’s actions and discussed how to resolve the tensions peacefully. The White House said Biden stressed the U.S. commitment to the security of the Baltic region. Latvia is a member of NATO.

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel told the Senate Armed Services Committee on Wednesday that the U.S. is increasing American participation in NATO’s air policing mission in its Baltic countries.

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