Poroshenko: Ukraine needs powerful army with modern weapons

BERLIN - Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said his country needs modern weapons to resist pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine.

In an interview published Thursday, Poroshenko told the German Die Welt newspaper that Ukraine wants peace, but has to defend itself against assailants.

"We do need a powerful army equipped with modern weapons," Porochenko said. "We want NATO to leave its gates open to Ukraine and consider Ukraine a special partner." 

Poroshenko also said that pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine have modern weapons allegedly provided by Russia.

According to the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, more than 5,300 people have been killed and 12,200 others injured in eastern Ukraine since April 2014 in the ongoing conflict between the Ukrainian army and pro-Russian separatists.

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