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Obama, Merkel Discuss Upsurge In Ukraine Violence, Migrant Crisis

U.S. President Barack Obama spoke by phone with German Chancellor Angela Merkel about the recent upsurge in violence in eastern Ukraine, the White House said on August 26.

Obama noted Ukraine's progress in implementing its obligations under the Minsk agreements, and reiterated that Russia must do the same, according to a White House statement.

The statement said the recent violence had resulted from increased attacks by combined Russian-separatist forces across a line of contact established under the Minsk accords.

Obama also expressed his appreciation for Merkel's leadership on the migration crisis in Europe, mentioning in particular her recent decision to ease the burden on border countries by providing a haven to Syrian refugees.

The surge in migrants seeking refuge from conflict or poverty in the Middle East, Africa, and Asia has left Europe facing its worst refugee crisis since World War Two.

Based on reporting by Reuters, AP, and dpa