By Arshad Mohammed and Steve Holland WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States held out the possibility on Monday that the U.S. and Russian foreign ministers could meet this week about Ukraine but said it needed to know Moscow would engage seriously on a diplomatic solution. Russia's bloodless seizure of the Crimea region of Ukraine has brought U.S.-Russian relations to one of their lowest points since the Cold War, with the United States searching for a way to keep Russia from annexing Crimea and its Russian naval base. The State Department said Secretary of State John Kerry told Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Saturday Washington wanted Moscow to cease its military advances in Ukraine, stop its drive to annex Crimea and end "provocative steps." "The United States needs to see concrete evidence that Russia is prepared to engage on the diplomatic proposals we have made to facilitate direct dialogue between Ukraine and Russia and to use international mechanisms like a contact group to deescalate the conflict," State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said in a written statement.
KIEV, Ukraine (AP) — Ukraine's foreign minister said Monday that his country was practically in a state of war with Russia, as Moscow further ratcheted up pressure on Kiev, claiming that Russian-leaning eastern regions have plunged into lawlessness.