Dutch government scraps trade mission to Russia

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A pro-Russian activist, calling himself Vasily, second left, speaks to other protesters at barricades, with a Russian national flag in front of an entrance to the Ukrainian regional office of the Security Service in Luhansk, 30 kilometers (20 miles) west of the Russian border, in Ukraine, Wednesday, April 9, 2014. Ukrainian Interior Minister Arsen Avakov said the standoff in Luhansk and the two neighboring Russian-leaning regions of Donetsk and Kharkiv must be resolved within the next two days either through negotiations or through the use of force, the Interfax news agency reported. (AP Photo/Igor Golovniov)

THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) — The Dutch government has scrapped a trade mission to Russia that was intended to forge closer ties between the two countries' energy sectors, blaming "developments in eastern Ukraine."

Foreign Minister Frans Timmermans said in a statement Wednesday "a successful mission is not possible in the current climate." The mission that was to have been led next month by Economic Affairs Minister Henk Kamp is being postponed until further notice.

The announcement comes amid tensions in eastern Ukraine, between the country's government and pro-Russian separatists.