Representatives from Ukraine and Russia will discuss the conflict in eastern Ukraine in Kiev on Monday, where tensions have risen between pro-Russian separatists and Ukrainian forces. France and Germany will mediate.
The warring factions agreed to a ceasefire last year, but violent clashes took place several times in recent weeks. Ukraine and Russia blame each other for the tensions. There are fears of a further escalation of the conflict.
Ukraine is concerned about Russian troops building on the border. According to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, there are threats “with war and the destruction of the Ukrainian state”.
Russia believes that Western countries, including Germany and France, “should stop participating in the propaganda campaign around Russian activities on Russian soil that do not threaten anyone”.
The conflict in Eastern Ukraine arose after Russia annexed Crimea in 2014. The fighting is estimated to have killed more than 13,000 people. France and Germany have acted as mediators between Ukraine and Russia since 2015.
The conflict is also being discussed this Monday by the foreign ministers of the EU member states.