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Putin Criticizes Ukrainian Government for Using Force Against Rebels

LAURA — Russian President Vladimir Putin has criticized the pro-Western government in Kiev for using force against the rebellious regions in east Ukraine rather than conducting talks with their Russian-speaking population to seek an end to the turmoil there.

"We don't see a desire from our partners in Kiev … to solve the problem of relations with the south-east of the country through a political process, with talks," Putin told a meeting on Friday with political scholars.

"We always see one and the same thing in different manifestations: to suppress by force.

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