Russian President Vladimir Putin's goal is to impose "full control" over Ukraine, though not necessarily through military force, European Commission head Jose Manuel Barroso says, Wall Street Journal reports.
Kiev and Western governments accuse Putin of remotely fomenting a pro-Russian insurrection in eastern Ukraine, and Barroso said Moscow's intervention in the country represented a dangerous precedent that flouted international law.
"I have no doubts that the goal of Mr Putin is to have full control of Ukraine," Barroso said at an event organised by the Atlantic Council think tank in Washington.
"I'm not saying that his goal is necessarily to occupy all Ukraine, but to have full control of Ukraine, that's his goal, I have absolutely no doubt.
"The problem is that intellectually and emotionally, the leadership in Russia, and certainly president Putin, have not accepted the independence of Ukraine”- he added.