"The leaders continued the discussion of the situation that occurred as a result of the violation of the Russian state border by the Ukrainian ships on November 25. They expressed mutual interest in preventing the escalation of tensions in the Azov-Black Sea area and in resolving problems caused by provocative actions by the Ukrainian authorities," the press service said in a statement.
Meanwhile, the German government noted that the central topic of the discussion was the recent Kerch Strait incident involving Russia and Ukraine.
In addition, Putin and Merkel touched upon the subject of the Syrian conflict, stressing the priority nature of the tasks to promote the inter-Syrian dialogue and the formation of the Constitutional Committee, according to the statement.
"The leaders also exchanged views on the situation in the area of strategic security in light of the US administration's plans to withdraw from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces [INF Treaty]. They agreed to continue contacts at various levels," the statement said.
"The [German] Chancellor and the [Russian] President also discussed gas transit from Russia through Ukraine after 2019, as well as the situation in Syria with focus on the formation of a constitutional committee," the press service said in a statement.
"The sides also discussed the situation around the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty [INF Treaty]," the statement said.