Obama, Merkel say no easing of Russia sanctions over Ukraine
US President Barack Obama and German Chancellor Angela Merkel spoke by telephone Wednesday on Ukraine, stressing they would keep up sanctions on Russia over its role in the crisis.
"There will be no easing of sanctions imposed on Russia until it has fulfilled all of its Minsk commitments," the White House said, referring to a recent deal to defuse tensions in eastern Ukraine.
The two leaders said the agreement -- which sketched out a ceasefire, called for the withdrawal of weapons from the frontline and opened the door to political dialogue -- was necessary for a "lasting and peaceful resolution to the conflict."
More than 6,000 people have been killed in almost a year of fighting.
© 2015 AFP