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    Donetsk Mayor Calls on Kiev to Start Peace Talks Involving Russia, Int'l Organizations

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    The mayor of Donetsk, Oleksandr Lukyanchenko, called on Ukrainian authorities to urgently start negotiations in the country's east over a peaceful solution to the crisis in the Donbas region, involving Russia and international organizations, the mayor’s press office said Wednesday.

    KIEV, June 11 (RIA Novosti) – The mayor of Donetsk, Oleksandr Lukyanchenko, called on Ukrainian authorities to urgently start negotiations in the country's east  over a peaceful solution to the crisis in the Donbas region, involving Russia and international organizations, the mayor’s press office said Wednesday.

    “I want to address the president of our country, the government, Verkhovna Rada, in order to urgently start all-encompassing talks at the highest level in the territory of our two regions over the settlement of the conflict. Russia and international organizations should be involved in the talks. With their help we need to stop the fratricidal war, no longer allow the deaths of civilians, children and the elderly. While there is at least a chance to stop the war, it should be used,” Lukyanchenko’s press office quoted the mayor as saying.

    Ukraine underwent a Western-backed regime change resembling a military coup in February. The country’s parliament ousted former president Viktor Yanukovych, changed the constitution and held snap presidential election on May 25, won by Ukrainian tycoon Petro Poroshenko.

    The Donetsk and Luhansk regions of Ukraine, which did not recognize the legitimacy of the February regime change in Kiev, held referendums on the status of the regions on May 11. About 90 percent of the participants voted for independence. The self-proclaimed People’s Republics of Donetsk and Luhansk started to create their own administrative bodies and law enforcement agencies.

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