Vladimir Putin, Petro Poroshenko talk about Ukraine crisis

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Putin, Poroshenko discuss Ukraine crisis
Moscow, Sept 9: Russian President Vladimir Putin and Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko talked over phone about ways to end the crisis in east Ukraine, the Kremlin said on Monday.

"The two presidents continued the Saturday talk on steps that would facilitate a peaceful settlement of Ukraine crisis," Xinhua quoted the Kremlin press service as saying, adding the dialogue will continue.

The Kremlin said Putin and Poroshenko on Saturday discussed the Ukraine situation in the context of Friday's Contact Group meeting in Minsk, where a ceasefire deal was signed.

Both talked on steps that would facilitate a peaceful settlement

The agreement was expected to pave the way for a political settlement of the crisis and a permanent end to the bloodshed in eastern Ukraine, which has claimed at least 2,600 lives since March.

The phone conversation, the latest in a flurry of telephone diplomacy between the two presidents, came as the tenuous ceasefire between Ukrainian government forces and rebels continues to hold despite sporadic fighting.

However, after gunfire hit areas near towns in eastern Ukraine overnight Monday, insurgents and government forces accused each other of breaking the ceasefire.

Observers have been wary of predicting how long it will last, but believe that a single day without human deaths gives hope for a political settlement of the conflict.

IANS

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