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Obama talks to Ukraine leader as US weighs lethal aid

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko is updating President Barack Obama about a new round of peace talks aimed at securing a cease-fire with pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine.



Washington: Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko is updating President Barack Obama about a new round of peace talks aimed at securing a cease-fire with pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine.

Obama and Poroshenko spoke by phone on Tuesday, just as Obama is weighing sending lethal defensive assistance to Ukraine's military. On Monday, Obama discussed the issue at the White House with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who opposes sending lethal aid to Ukraine and is spearheading the peace talks in Minsk.

The White House isn't saying whether Obama discussed lethal aid with Poroshenko. A White House statement describing the phone call says only that Obama committed to providing financial support for Ukraine.

Ukraine and the West accuse Russia of fueling the rebellion in eastern Ukraine with troops and weapons.  

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