United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has hailed a peace plan put forward by Ukraine's President, Petro Poroshenko, and said he hopes it will reduce violence and tensions in the eastern part of the country.
According to media reports, the peace plan involves proposals for decentralising power, holding early elections, and creating a buffer zone on the Ukrainian-Russian border.
In his phone call with Mr. Poroshenko on Saturday, the Secretary-General reiterated the UN's commitment to help resolve the crisis in eastern Ukraine.
He also discussed the humanitarian situation in the country, while reaffirming the world body's commitment to working with the Ukrainian authorities to assist with internally displaced persons and other humanitarian issues.
Just a few days ago, the UN human rights office reported the breakdown of law and order in the areas held by armed groups in the country's east – with increasing evidence of abductions, detentions, torture, and killings – as well as a number of “worrying trends” emerging in Crimea.
“All [the armed groups] have achieved is a climate of insecurity and fear which is having a hugely detrimental impact on many thousands of people,” High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay had stated. “The time has come to put down the guns and talk. Peace and reconciliation, and long-term solutions are certainly attainable.”