Telephone conversation with US President Barack Obama 2014-07-17 20:30:00 In line with a previous agreement, Vladimir Putin had a telephone conversation with President of the United States Barack Obama. The parties had a detailed discussion of the crisis in Ukraine. Vladimir Putin reiterated the need for an immediate unconditional cessation of hostilities by both sides in the southeast of Ukraine, which has already led to numerous casualties and has forced hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians to seek refuge in Russia. He stressed the inadmissibility of opening fire at Russia’s territory by the Ukrainian army, which led to casualties among Russian citizens. The President of Russia briefed his American counterpart on the measures taken by Russia to resume consultations by the contact group with the participation of representatives from southeast Ukraine. Hope was expressed that the American side will also contribute to the start of peace talks in Ukraine. This, in part, is the purpose of Russia’s initiative to bring OSCE observers to Russian-Ukrainian border points as soon as possible. Vladimir Putin expressed his disappointment with the new contentious decision made by Washington to introduce so-called sectoral sanctions that would be detrimental to both bilateral ties and to efforts to find a compromise in resolving the crisis in Ukraine. The parties also exchanged views on the situation in the Middle East. Vladimir Putin shared his impressions of the main outcome of his trip to Latin America and of the BRICS summit. The Russia leader informed the US President of the report received from air traffic controllers immediately prior to their conversation about the crash of a Malaysian airplane over the Ukrainian territory.