Hollande, Merkel, Putin support Ukraine ceasefire plan

Hollande, Merkel and Putin back plans for ceasefire in eastern Ukraine

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Updated Aug 30, 2015

French President Francois Hollande declared that France, Germany and Russia agree to support plans for an entire cease fire in eastern Ukraine as of Sep. 1 after the country’s leaders talked on the phone over the issue on Saturday.

"There was agreement that the Minsk agreements remain the basis for an improvement of the situation in the Donbass region, eastern Ukraine," the German statement said, referring to a deal agreed in February between Ukraine and pro-Russian separatist rebels.

Ukrainian soldiers and rebels have been killed in clashes between the two sides, using heavy weapons. The fighting has damaged the February deal. Both of them blamed each other over the violations.

The Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) and rebels said that Ukraine and pro-Russian leaders agreed on Wednesday to finish the violations as of Sep. 1.

French President Hollande’s office said in a statement that after he agreed with the German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Russian President Vladimir Putin, it would be helpful to hold a meeting with Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko in the following days.

"They strongly backed the call for a complete cease fire from Sept. 1," Hollande's office said. "They underlined that the respect of a lasting cease fire was a necessity given the situation of civilians in eastern Ukraine."

Meanwhile, US Vice President Joe Biden spoke to Poroshenko over the phone. The White House said that Biden "strongly criticised statements by separatist leaders indicating their intention to take additional territory and hold local elections outside of the Ukrainian legal framework, in direct contravention of the Minsk agreements."

TRTWorld and agencies