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Scholz, Macron ask Putin for 'serious direct negotiations' with Zelensky

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and French President Emmanuel Macron on Saturday asked Russia's Vladimir Putin to hold "direct serious negotiations" with his Ukrainian counterpart Volodymyr Zelensky.

May 28, 2022 / 08:06 PM IST
Air raid sirens blared across Ukraine on May 23 morning, sounding the daily alarm ahead of anticipated attacks by Russian forces in the east and south of the country, three months after Russia's Feb. 24 invasion to

Air raid sirens blared across Ukraine on May 23 morning, sounding the daily alarm ahead of anticipated attacks by Russian forces in the east and south of the country, three months after Russia's Feb. 24 invasion to "denazify" the country. (Image: Reuters)

German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and French President Emmanuel Macron on Saturday asked Russia's Vladimir Putin to hold "direct serious negotiations" with his Ukrainian counterpart Volodymyr Zelensky.

During an 80-minute conversation with the Russian president, the two EU leaders "insisted on an immediate ceasefire and a withdrawal of Russian troops," the German chancellor's office said.

Macron and Scholz urged Putin to have "serious direct negotiations with the Ukrainian president and (find) a diplomatic solution to the conflict."

The German Chancellor and the French President also "called on the Russian President to ensure an improvement in the humanitarian situation of the civilian population" in Ukraine..

The two European leaders "took positive note of the Russian President's commitment to treat captured fighters in accordance with international humanitarian law, in particular the Geneva Conventions, and to ensure unhindered access to the International Committee of the Red Cross".

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The global food supply, which has been hit by Russia's action in Ukraine, was also discussed.

Putin assured that he "wants to allow the export of grain from Ukraine, especially by sea," the German chancellery said.

The three leaders also agreed on the "central role" the United Nations has to play to guarantee exports.
AFP
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