Russian President Vladimir Putin turned peacenik on Wednesday and said he was hoping for a ceasefire between Ukraine and pro-Russian rebels by Friday. Putin even rolled out a peace proposal that will suit both sides to halt the military action in eastern Ukraine. Putin claimed that his views coincided with the thinking of Ukrainian President on that matter, reported BBC.
A statement from Kremlin said there was a telephone conversation between the two Presidents in which they found a convergence of view points to end the crisis.
Putin's spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, also clarified that Putin and Poroshenko did not agree a ceasefire per se as Russia is not a party to the conflict. But they only discussed about ways to settle the conflict. Poroshenko was quoted in news reports that said he too hoped for a ceasefire.
Seven-point peace Plan
Putin outlined a 7 Point plan that can form the basis of the ceasefire.
- End of all offence operations by the Ukrainian army and eastern rebels
- Pull back of Ukrainian troops away from civilian centres
- Monitoring of the ceasefire by international agencies
- Avoiding use of military jets against civilians
- Prisoner exchange without conditions
- Humanitarian aid for refugees
- Restoring destroyed infrastructure
Reuters reported that Prime Minister Arseny Yatseniuk reacted sharply to Putin's plan and said it was a "deception" to hoodwink the NATO summit that will take up Ukraine for discussion.
U.S. President Barack Obama too said the Ukraine conflict will end only when Russia stopped the supply of weapons and manpower to the rebels.
The rebel leaders also maintained a cordial face on ceasefire, calling it a good step. But they reiterated the condition that Ukrainian troops have to move out of the eastern territory. That is the reasonable way, said Vladimir Antyufeyev, who is the self styled deputy prime minister of the Donetsk People's Republic.
France Scraps Deal
Showing the mistrust and disapproval of Moscow over Ukraine, France declared that would call off the planned delivery of the two Mistral helicopter carriers to Russia.
But Moscow reacted that the scrapped deal of 1.2 billion-euro ($1.7 billion) will only harm France and described the decision as "no tragedy"