W.H.: Vladimir Putin calls Barack Obama to discuss Ukraine plan
By: Carrie Budoff Brown
March 28, 2014 05:21 PM EDT
RIYADH, Saudi Arabia — Russian President Vladimir Putin called President Barack Obama to discuss the U.S. proposal for a diplomatic resolution to the crisis in Ukraine, the White House said in a statement Friday.
Obama suggested that Russia “put a concrete response in writing,” and agreed that Secretary of State John Kerry would meet with his Russian counterpart, Sergey Lavrov to discuss it, the statement said.
“President Obama noted that the Ukrainian government continues to take a restrained and de-escalatory approach to the crisis and is moving ahead with constitutional reform and democratic elections, and urged Russia to support this process and avoid further provocations, including the buildup of forces on its border with Ukraine,” the statement read.
Obama also told Putin that the United States supports a diplomatic path in close consultation with Ukraine, according to the statement.
“President Obama made clear that this remains possible only if Russia pulls back its troops and does not take any steps to further violate Ukraine’s territorial integrity and sovereignty,” the statement read. “President Obama reiterated that the United States has strongly opposed the actions that Russia has already taken to violate Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.”