Germany, France press for peace plan action ahead of Ukraine visit

Reuters News
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Posted: Feb 22, 2016 7:33 AM

BERLIN (Reuters) - Germany and France on Monday called for the implementation of the Minsk peace plan for Ukraine, urging both Moscow and Kiev to set aside differences and push forward with reforms.

"We need the support from the Russian side to implement this Minsk deal and convince separatists to go along," German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier said at a news conference in Berlin with his French counterpart Jean-Marc Ayrault, shortly before flying to Kiev for political talks.

"But we also need Ukraine's domestic policy, especially in light of the turbulences of the last weeks and calls for the prime minister to step down," Steinmeier added.

Steinmeier and Ayrault both urged the Ukrainian government to press ahead with political reforms such as agreeing on a new election law and special rights for regions.

"There's simply not enough progress when it comes to implementing the political agreements", Steinmeier said.

(Reporting by Tina Bellon and Michael Nienaber)