German says new political impetus urgently needed in Ukraine crisis

by Reuters
Sunday, 17 August 2014 11:40 GMT

BERLIN, Aug 17 (Reuters) - German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier said on Sunday, ahead of crisis talks in Berlin, that new political impetus was urgently needed to resolve the fighting in Ukraine because without it, there was a risk of further escalation.

Steinmeier is due to hold the meeting with his Russian, Ukrainian and French counterparts later in the day.

"We urgently need new political impetus now, otherwise we run the risk of stalling, regressing again or entering another, worse spiral of escalation," Steinmeier said in a statement.

He said the meeting in Berlin would be used to explore ways to re-start the political process, adding that this meant above all coming up with a plan on how to bring about a sustainable ceasefire and a framework for effective border controls.

"Only in this way can eastern Ukraine come to rest and Kiev can start a national dialogue again to integrate the people in the east appropriately," he said.

The French government has said it hopes the meeting will be the first step towards a Ukraine-Russia peace summit. (Reporting by Michelle Martin; Editing by Alison Williams)

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