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World leaders kick Ukraine diplomacy into high gear at G-7 meetings

  • APTOPIX Belgium G7 Obama-1.jpg

    U.S. President Barack Obama, third left, walks with, from left to right, Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, British Prime Minister David Cameron, French President Francois Hollande, European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, after a G7 group photo in Brussels, Belgium, Thursday, June 5, 2014. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak) (The Associated Press)

  • 593d4e4cf9d33215560f6a706700f025.jpg

    G7 leaders, from left to right: Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi; Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper; European Council President Herman Van Rompuy; German Chancellor Angela Merkel and British Prime Minister David Cameron; walk together after a G7 group photo in Brussels, Belgium, Thursday, June 5, 2014. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak) (The Associated Press)

  • 29637218f9c73215560f6a70670007d0.jpg

    U.S. President Barack Obama, center, laughs as he is seated with British Prime Minister David Cameron, left, and French President Francois Hollande during a G7 session in Brussels, Belgium, Thursday, June 5, 2014. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak) (The Associated Press)

Diplomatic efforts to resolve the months-long standoff between Ukraine and Russia are kicking into high gear in two European capitals.

After the leaders of the Group of Seven major economies kept the threat of further sanctions against Russia on the table, Thursday's action was moving from Brussels to Paris where at least two tete-a-tete meetings were planned between President Vladimir Putin and European leaders.

If President Barack Obamas didn't envisage such an encounter, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry will meet Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov on the eve of D-Day commemorations in Normandy.

European leaders hope this week will offer a chance for a diplomatic breakthrough. The meetings will take place during a dinner, lunch and a double dinner.