THE WORLDPOST
03/12/2014 11:31 am ET Updated Mar 12, 2014

On Ukraine, Merkel Finds Limits Of Her Rapport With Putin

ALEXANDER NEMENOV via Getty Images

BERLIN — Since the first Russian forces infiltrated Crimea on Feb. 28, Germany’s chancellor, Angela Merkel, has spoken to President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia at least four times on the phone, her spokesman says. In the space of 10 days, she went from warning him to avoid “any step that could contribute to escalation” to bluntly telling him that Crimea’s plans for a referendum on joining Russia are “illegal.”

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