The President and Chancellor Merkel spoke together and at length to President Putin and President Poroshenko early this afternoon. This call was part of the political process begun at the meeting between the Russian and Ukrainian presidents in Bénouville on 6 June.
Following the Ukrainian President’s announcement of a peace plan and ceasefire, François Hollande and Angela Merkel noted the Russian authorities’ first gestures towards de-escalation in eastern Ukraine and especially the decision, adopted today by Russia’s Federation Council, to cancel the authorization given to the Russian President in March to use force.
They encouraged the Russian and Ukrainian presidents to work together, particularly on establishing a ceasefire verification mechanism with the support of the OSCE and on effectively controlling the Russia-Ukraine border. They asked for those being held to be released as soon as possible.
They lent their support to President Poroshenko so that the peace plan he presented is implemented as swiftly as possible./.