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German foreign minister urges RF to contribute to ease tension in Ukraine

April 12, 2014, 16:53 UTC+3 BERLIN
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BERLIN, April 12. /ITAR-TASS/. German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier has urged Russia to contribute to easing tension in Ukraine.

The conflict could be settled only if Russia contributed, for example by continuing withdrawing its forces from the border, the minister said during his Japan visit on Saturday.

The four-party meeting would be only a beginning of work to settle the crisis, he said, noting the importance of the planned talks.

First of all, de-escalation of the Ukrainian crisis was needed, and an objective for a longer term was to prevent political and economic collapse of Ukraine for the country to remain united, he said. It would be more difficult than many thought, he added.

Meanwhile, protest actions continued in Ukraine's eastern regions on Saturday.

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