MOSCOW Aug 21 A meeting between the leaders of
Russia, Ukraine and the European Union in Minsk next week is a
step towards defusing the conflict in Ukraine, the speaker of
the Russian parliament was quoted as saying on Thursday.
"The Minsk meeting is one of the stages on the way towards
de-escalation of this conflict," Sergei Naryshkin was quoted by
state-run RIA news agency as saying.
The leaders of Belarus and Kazakhstan, who are part of the
Russia-led Customs Union, will also be present at the Aug. 26
meeting in the Belarus capital.
(Reporting By Alexei Anishchuk; Editing by Christian Lowe)