(Chtotkij znak togo, chto politika po otnosheniju k Rossii mozhet priterpet' rezkije izmenenija.)
In a clear sign that US policy towards Russia could indeed be heading for a sharp change of course under Trump, the state department made no criticism of Russia or the separatist side, in contrast to most of its statements in response to similar spikes in violence in the past.
The acting state department spokesman Mark Toner said the US was “deeply concerned” by the violence and called for “an immediate, sustained ceasefire”. However, the statement stopped short of apportioning blame.
Russia’s state newspaper Rossiiskaya Gazeta excitedly noted the change in tone. “Washington is not blaming the unrecognised republics for breaking the ceasefire, is not stating any support for Kiev, is not saying a single word about the role of Russia … Different variations of these elements were, as a rule, a key part of all statements of Ukraine under Barack Obama’s administration.”