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Medvedev and Biden discuss Ukrainian developments by telephone

March 03, 2014, 19:27 UTC+3

The Russian prime minister stated about the need to defend the interests of all Crimean residents

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Russia’s Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev

Russia’s Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev

© ITAR-TASS/Yekaterina Shtukina

MOSCOW, March 3. /ITAR-TASS/. Russia’s Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has held a telephone conversation with the Vice President of the US Joe Biden, spokesperson of the Russian prime minister Natalia Timakova reported on Monday.

The call was initiated by the American side. “The discussion of the situation in Ukraine has been continued. The prime minister stated about the need to protect the interests of all Ukrainian citizens, including residents of Crimea, as well as interests of Russian citizens that are currently on Ukraine’s territory,” Timakova said.

Medvedev’s spokesperson Natalia Timakova said that Biden had not touched upon the issue of economic sanctions or the G8 summit.

The Russian prime minister said Moscow hoped for “a constructive U.S. role in world affairs, which would be based on the fundamental principles of international law. The chairman of the government once again drew the attention of the U.S. vice president to the fact that no decision to use the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation had been made by the president of Russia,” Timakova said.

Medvedev also informed Biden that although the Ukrainian government lacked proper legitimacy, working contacts with it had not been suspended.

Biden urged Russia to “begin a meaningful political dialogue with the Ukrainian government.”

“The Vice President urged Russia to pull back its forces, support the immediate deployment of international monitors to Ukraine, and begin a meaningful political dialogue with the Ukrainian government,” the White House said.
It said that Biden had had “a discussion with Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseny Yatsenyuk over the weekend.”

Over the past several days, President Vladimir Putin discussed the situation in Ukraine by telephone with U.S. President Barack Obama, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Francois Hollande, British Prime Minister David Cameron, and President of the European Council Herman Van Rompuy.

It was announced earlier on Monday, March 3, that the G7 countries had decided to suspend their participation in events associated with the preparation of the scheduled G-8 Summit in Sochi in June.

The leaders of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, the United States, the President of the European Commission, and the President of the European Council condemned what they called Russia’s “clear violation of the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine, in contravention of Russia’s obligations under the U.N. Charter and its 1997 basing agreement with Ukraine.”

They called on Moscow to “address any ongoing security or human rights concerns that it has with Ukraine through direct negotiations, and/or via international observation or mediation under the auspices of the U.N. or the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe.”

However, the Russian Foreign Ministry said this decision was “not only politically flawed but it also runs counter to the principles of constructive interaction within the Group of Eight format, which is intended to tap the combined potential of its member countries in the interests of development and global stability and to combat transboundary challenges and threats.”

“Russia has repeatedly provided necessary explanations via various channels and at all levels” regarding the situation in Ukraine, Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich said.

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