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Tillerson, Lavrov discuss implementation of Minsk agreements in Donbas

U.S. and Russian diplomats held phone conversation on Tuesday and talked through the ongoing hostilities in Ukraine and Syria
23:18, 26 December 2017

Open source

The current situation in Donbas and implementation of Minsk agreements were the central topics of discussion between Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov and U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson. This was mentioned on the website of the Russian Foreign Ministry.

The two officials insisted it was essential to continue peace talks in the Minsk and Normandy formats.

Related: Poroshenko, Tillerson by telephone agree positions on UN peacekeepers in Donbas

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on Tuesday asked his Russian counterpart to reduce the levels of violence in eastern Ukraine, where Russian troops have intervened on the side of separatist militias in their ongoing clash with the Ukrainian government, The Politico reported.

“Underscoring the U.S. concern with the rising violence in eastern Ukraine, the secretary requested that Russia return its representatives to the Joint Center on Coordination and Control and lower the level of violence,” State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said in a statement emailed to reporters Wednesday.

Officially, the Russian government has denied that its military is operating in eastern Ukraine, despite photographic and other evidence to the contrary. Eastern Ukraine has been the site of clashes between Ukrainian government forces and pro-Russia militias since 2014, when Ukraine’s Moscow-aligned president was ousted by protesters in Kiev.

Related: Lavrov, Tillerson to discuss Ukraine in Vienna

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