KIEV, May 5 (Xinhua) -- Kiev on Monday expressed its support for Germany's initiative to hold a second round of diplomatic talks in Geneva in an effort to halt violence in Ukraine.
"In our opinion, at that meeting the sides should focus on the issues that will contribute to the de-escalation of tensions, in particular on ways to ensure a smooth run of presidential elections," Ukrainian Foreign Ministry spokesman Eugene Perebiynis told a press briefing.
Perebiynis said that the peace conference could take place before the elections scheduled for May 25.
German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier told ARD television late Sunday that all parties must push for a return to the deal reached in Switzerland last month encouraging all sides to lay down arms.
"I advocate that the first meeting in Geneva now should be followed by a second meeting in Geneva, during which clear appointments will be met on how to bring this conflict to a halt and how to lead the conflict to a political solution," he said.
Steinmeier said he had hold "many talks in the past hours" on the new Ukraine peace conference with his U.S. and Russian counterparts John Kerry and Sergei Lavrov, as well as EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton.
"We must now make every effort again to come back to the Geneva agreement," he said.
Steinmeier also expressed his hope that the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe play a greater role in solving the crisis, which has escalated during the weekend following more than 40 deaths in clashes between pro- and anti-government protesters.
On April 17, Ukraine, Russia, the United States and the European Union reached a deal in the Swiss city calling for all sides of the conflict to refrain from violence.
Kiev and Moscow are accusing each other of fomenting the unrest and failing to implement the treaty.
KIEV, May 5 (Xinhua) -- Ukrainian Acting President Alexandr Turchynov discussed the ongoing crisis in his country with German Chancellor Angela Merkel during a telephone conversation on Monday, the presidential press-service said in a statement.
During the phone talk, the two leaders raised the issue of Ukraine's "anti-terror" operation in eastern regions aimed at dislodging pro-Russian activists, who have seized a number of government buildings there. Full story
BERLIN, May 4 (Xinhua) -- Given the escalating violence in Ukraine, German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier called for a second conference in Geneva to settle the Ukraine crisis, German television channel ARD reported on Sunday.
In the ARD report from Berlin, Steinmeier said: "I advocate that the first meeting in Geneva now should be followed by a second meeting in Geneva, during which clear appointments will be met on how to bring this conflict to a halt and how to lead the conflict to a political solution." Full story