Russian President Vladimir Putin threw water on the prospect of all-out war between Moscow and Ukraine, saying Monday that "such an apocalyptic scenario is unlikely."
The U.S. and its allies are considering imposing more sanctions against Russia for allegedly undermining a truce in eastern Ukraine. That cease-fire was the result of talks in Belarus — led by France and Germany between Russia and Ukraine — aimed at stemming the year-long conflict, and both sides have been accused of violations.
Putin said Monday said there was no need for a further meeting, telling state television that he hopes the agreements reached in Belarus "will be fulfilled." When asked if he thought a fullscale war with Ukraine was a possibility, he said: "I think that such an apocalyptic scenario is unlikely and I hope this will never happen."
While Russia has denied claims it is providing support to rebels in eastern Ukraine, Secretary of State John Kerry said over the weekend that the U.S. "knows to a certainty" Moscow's involvement in the conflict there.
— Cassandra Vinograd