MOSCOW, April 15 Russian President Vladimir
Putin, in a telephone call with U.S. President Barack Obama,
denied the Kremlin was interfering in Ukraine and urged the
United States to use its influence to prevent bloodshed there,
the Kremlin said.
"The Russian side underlined that protests in Donetsk,
Lugansk, Kharkov, Slaviansk and other cities in the south-east
of Ukraine were the result of the lack of will and inability of
the leadership in Kiev to take account of the interests of the
Russian and Russian-speaking population," the Kremlin said in a
"President Putin called on Barack Obama to do his utmost to
use the opportunities that the United States has to prevent the
use of force, and bloodshed."
Putin told Obama that reports that Russia was interfering in
Ukraine were based on erroneous information. He said the focus
of the authorities in Kiev should be on involving all regions
and political forces in Ukraine in drawing up a new
Both sides agreed to continue to search for diplomatic means
of influencing the situation in the run-up to international
talks on Ukraine, scheduled to take place on April 17 in Geneva,
the statement said.
(Reporting by Christian Lowe)