WASHINGTON, June 22 (Xinhua) -- U.S. Vice President Joseph Biden on Sunday applauded Ukraine's unilateral declaration of a ceasefire with militants in the country's east, but warned again of further sanctions in response to Moscow's failure to take de-escalatory moves.
In a phone conversation with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, the veep voiced "concern" about the militants' refusal to reciprocate Kiev's week-long ceasefire declared on Friday, the White House said in a statement.
It said Biden also "commended President Poroshenko's continued commitment to holding round-table discussions with civic leaders in eastern Ukraine, in accordance with his peace plan."
Poroshenko has accused the militants of continuing to attack the Ukrainian forces, following the ceasefire declaration.
Biden reiterated that the United States was working closely with other Group of Seven industrialized nations -- Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy and Japan -- to impose further economic sanctions on Russia, if Moscow did not take actions as demanded by the group's leaders in their summit held in Brussels early this month.
The Kremlin press service said Saturday Russian President Vladimir Putin supported Poroshenko's order for ceasefire and the president has urged all parties to stop all hostile actions and start talks, stressing that the peace plan "will not be viable and realistic without practical steps towards negotiations."
During telephone conversations with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Francois Hollande on Sunday, Putin also expressed support for Ukraine's peace settlement, the Kremlin said.
But he stressed "in this context it was stressed that the intentions announced by the Ukrainian head of state must be supported by an actual ceasefire," the Kremlin said.
MOSCOW, June 21 (Xinhua) -- Russian President Vladimir Putin supported Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko's order to cease fire in the southeastern country and his intention to seek a peaceful settlement of the crisis, the Kremlin press service said Saturday.
Putin urged all parties to stop all hostile actions and start talks, stressing that the peace plan "will not be viable and realistic without practical steps towards negotiations." Full Story
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