Hague to visit Ukraine, says it needs fast financial aid

Britain's Foreign Secretary William Hague leaves 10 Downing Street after a cabinet meeting in London February 4, 2014. REUTERS/Suzanne Plunkett

LONDON (Reuters) - Foreign Secretary William Hague said on Monday he would visit Ukraine "shortly", warning that the country needed urgent international financial help to prop up its ailing economy. Hague will travel to Washington later on Monday to discuss Ukraine with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and the International Monetary Fund (IMF). He said the IMF was best placed to provide financial support and advice to Ukraine. "Ukraine's financial situation is very serious and without outside assistance may not be sustainable," Hague told Britain's parliament. "Such support could be provided quickly once requested by the new government. It requires a stable and legitimate government to be in place and a commitment to the reforms necessary to produce economic stability. International financial support cannot be provided without conditions and clarity that it will be put to proper use." Ukraine's ousted President Viktor Yanukovich is on the run after being toppled by bloody street protests in which police snipers killed opposition demonstrators. "He has said he will not step down, but it is clear his authority is no longer widely accepted," said Hague, saying any new government in Ukraine would need to be set up in a spirit of reconciliation that united the country. (Reporting by Kylie MacLellan; Editing by Andrew Osborn)

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