Zelensky, Merkel discuss conflict resolution in Donbas

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KIEV, Jan. 15 (Xinhua) -- Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky discussed conflict resolution in the east of the country over the telephone conversation with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, the President's press service said on Friday.

Zelensky informed the German Chancellor about the ceasefire, established on July 27, 2020, being generally observed but no further progress has been established apart from it.

Zelensky noted that Ukraine has fulfilled all the agreements reached at the meeting of the Normandy Four leaders in Paris in Dec. 2019, calling for further efforts in resolving the conflict.

The two leaders acknowledged that the talks between the advisers of the heads of the Normandy Four, which took place on Jan. 12 this year in Berlin, were not easy, but constructive. Ukraine and Germany expect regular consultations on Jan. 22.

At the summit of Germany, France, Russia and Ukraine, known as the Normandy Four, in Paris on Dec. 9, 2019, the parties issued a joint declaration and agreed to meet four months later in Berlin in order to continue work on resolving the situation in eastern Ukraine.

The declaration envisaged an updated demining plan, a ceasefire in the region by the end of the year and a separation of forces by the end of March 2020, a withdrawal of heavy weaponry from the demarcation line, a prisoner exchange and local elections, among other measures.

The ongoing conflict in eastern Ukraine, which has claimed the lives of some 14,000 people and left as many as 40,000 wounded, began in April 2014. Enditem

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