US welcomes talks to resolve Ukraine conflict

The United States voiced support Monday to the ongoing dialogue among the foreign ministers from Ukraine, Germany, France, and Russia to work toward “a sustainable ceasefire by all parties in the Luhansk and Donetsk regions in eastern Ukraine that would build toward a lasting peace.”

“We should emphasize; however, that our ultimate goal is not just a temporary halt to violence. We want Russia to stop destabilizing Ukraine and occupying Crimea, a part of Ukraine’s territory, and allow all of the people of Ukraine to come together to make their own decisions about their country’s future through a democratic political process,” the Department of State said in a fact sheet.

It stressed “while Russia says it seeks peace, its actions do not match its rhetoric.” It added “we have no evidence that Russia’s support for the separatists has ceased,” but “in fact, we assess that Russia continues to provide them with heavy weapons, other military equipment and financing, and continues to allow militants to enter Ukraine freely.”

It noted “Russia denies this, just as it denied its forces were involved in Crimea, until after the fact.” It added that “Russia has refused to call for the separatists to lay down their arms, and continues to mass its troops along the Ukrainian border.”

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