Russia, US press each other on Ukraine deal

21st April 2014, Comments 0 comments

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov and his US counterpart John Kerry urged each other in a telephone conversation Monday to use their influence to get Ukraine's rival sides to honour last week's Geneva accord.

Kerry told Lavrov that "concrete steps" towards defusing the Ukraine crisis should include "publicly calling on separatists to vacate illegal buildings and checkpoints, accept amnesty and address their grievances politically," State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said.

In Moscow, the Russian foreign ministry said Lavrov asked Kerry to "pressure Kiev to stop hotheads from provoking a bloody conflict and to encourage the Ukrainian authorities to strictly fulfil their obligations", the Russian foreign ministry said in a statement.

The Geneva accord signed last Thursday by Ukraine, Russia, the United States and the EU, calls for all "illegal armed groups" in Ukraine to surrender their weapons and halt the occupation of public buildings and other sites.

But a brief Easter truce was broken on Sunday when two insurgents were killed in the rebel-held eastern Ukrainian city of Slavyansk.

© 2014 AFP

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