Mr Putin and Ms Merkel exchanged views on the anti-constitutional course taken by the current authorities in Kiev to forcefully suppress protests in the southeast regions of Ukraine. The President of Russia noted that the sharp escalation of the conflict essentially puts the nation on the brink of civil war.
The leaders of Russia and Germany stressed the vital importance of the four-party (Russia, EU, US, Ukraine) talks scheduled for April 17, 2014. Hope was expressed that the meeting in Geneva would send a clear signal to help take the situation in a peaceful direction.
The President of Russia also pointed out the importance of resolving issues in stabilising Ukraine’s economy and ensuring supplies and transit of Russian natural gas to Europe, which were raised in his message to the leaders of several European nations on April 10, 2014.