Putin, Hollande, Merkel begin talks at Kremlin

A meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin, French President Francois Hollande and German Chancellor Angela Merkel began at the Kremlin on Friday evening.

A meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin, French President Francois Hollande and German Chancellor Angela Merkel began at the Kremlin on Friday evening.

"Talks are held in the tete-a-tete format, i.e. without delegation members or some experts," the Russian president's press secretary Dmitry Peskov told Interfax.

The European leaders arrived in Moscow on Friday evening on a brief visit to discuss ways to resolve the Ukrainian crisis. The meeting was preceded by consultations between experts from the three countries.

A day earlier Hollande and Merkel held talks with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko in Kyiv. On the same day Poroshenko met with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry in Kiev.

Before flying to the Ukrainian capital the French president said that he and Merkel had prepared a new peace proposal for Ukraine, which they are going to discuss in Kyiv and in Moscow.

The German chancellor's office said that the 12-point Minsk protocol will be the basis of the talks in Moscow.

However, after their talks in Kyiv the French and German leaders refrained from comment, and details of the Hollande-Merkel proposal are still unknown.

Before flying to Moscow on Friday Merkel did not rule out that more talks will be required to settle the crisis in the southeast.

She also said that diplomacy is the only way to resolve the Ukrainian conflict, and the solution should be based on the Minsk accords.

Read more: Ukrainian, German and French leaders come up with new settlement proposals>>>

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