Putin says Russia committed to Ukraine peace process: Kremlin
Russian President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday told his Ukrainian counterpart Petro Poroshenko that Moscow remains committed to helping find a peaceful resolution to the fighting in Ukraine, the Kremlin said.
In a phone conversation between the two leaders "Putin confirmed Russia's readiness to continue to contribute to a peaceful settlement of the crisis," the Kremlin press office said.
The talk -- the latest in a flurry of telephone diplomacy between the two heads of state -- comes as a shaky truce between government forces and pro-Moscow rebels continues to hold despite sporadic fighting.
During the discussion "the importance for both sides of the internal Ukrainian conflict to ensure a durable ceasefire was highlighted," the statement said.
The truce deal between Kiev and the insurgents -- whom the West says are backed by Russian troops -- was signed Friday after Putin and Poroshenko hammered out a compromise aimed at ending five months of brutal fighting.
The statement also said that the leaders discussed economic relations between the two countries, which have imploded since the start of the crisis.
European Union nations will hold fresh talks Wednesday about when to implement fresh sanctions against Russia, officials said, as differences emerged over how far they should be linked to a ceasefire in Ukraine.
The 28 member states finally agreed on a new sanctions package against Moscow on Monday, but said they would wait for a "few days" to implement them depending on the situation on the ground.
© 2014 AFP