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German, French leaders urge swift cease-fire, troop withdrawal in call with Putin

PoliticsGerman, French leaders urge swift cease-fire, troop withdrawal in call with Putin

Berlin (The Times Groupe)- The German and French leaders called on the Russian president on Saturday to agree to “an immediate cease-fire and a withdrawal of Russian troops” from Ukraine.

Steffen Hebestreit, spokesman for the German government, said Olaf Scholz and Emmanuel Macron spoke for 80 minutes with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Scholz and Macron urged Putin to engage in “serious direct talks” with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, and to find “a diplomatic solution to the conflict.”

Approximately 4,031 civilians have been killed and 4,735 injured in Ukraine since Russia’s war on its neighbor began on Feb. 24. The actual death toll is likely much higher.

The UN refugee agency (UNHCR) reports that more than 6.7 million people have fled to other countries and more than 7.7 million have been internally displaced.

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