Nazarbayev, Obama Discuss Ways to Advance Peaceful Solution for Ukraine Crisis

ASTANA – Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev held a late night telephone conversation with U.S. President Barack Obama on Jan. 21 at the initiative of the American side, the Akorda presidential residence announced.
imageThe two leaders talked about the situation in the south-eastern Ukraine. According to the Akorda, Obama assured Nazarbayev he is committed to finding a diplomatic solution to the situation in Ukraine, having stressed that it is important to implement the Minsk agreements in order to resolve the conflict.
Obama praised Kazakhstan’s efforts in strengthening international security and expressed his hope that the Kazakh President will continue to actively contribute to finding a peaceful solution to the conflict in Ukraine, the Akorda added.
Nazarbayev, in his turn, informed the U.S. leader that he is personally dealing with the issue, which, in the opinion of the Kazakh side, can be solved through peace talks between the heads of Ukraine, Russia, Germany and France.
He noted that economic sanctions against Russia have been affecting the entire Central Asian region as well and asked his U.S. counterpart to get involved more actively in the search for compromise on Ukraine.
During the conversation, the two leaders also discussed the current state and future prospects of bilateral relations between Kazakhstan and the U.S., as well as a number of other topical issues on the international agenda.
In the meantime, the foreign ministers of Germany, France, Russia, and Ukraine met in Berlin on Jan. 21 to discuss the conflict in south-eastern Ukraine.
According to German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, progress has been made during the talks and an agreement has been reached on establishing security zones between the Kiev military and eastern Ukrainian militia. The four foreign ministers agreed to strongly support the pullback of heavy artillery by both sides in the Ukrainian conflict.
Against this backdrop, Kazakhstan remains committed to continuing its efforts to help stabilise the situation in Ukraine, actively participating in the negotiation process and rendering humanitarian assistance to that country, officials in Astana have noted.
Nazarbayev has recently reiterated Kazakhstan’s readiness to provide a dialogue platform in its capital Astana for the continuation of peaceful negotiations in the Normandy format.
As part of its humanitarian assistance to Ukraine, earlier in January Kazakhstan sent $400,000 worth of aid to Ukraine’s southeastern regions to help ease the crisis following months of military conflict. In October 2014, Kazakhstan also donated $30,000 to the International Committee of the Red Cross’s humanitarian effort in Ukraine.

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