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Germany's top diplomat on shuttle mission between Moscow, Kiev

  • NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg speaks with the media as he arrives for a meeting with EU defense ministers at the EU Council building in Brussels on Tuesday, Nov. 18, 2014. (AP Photo/Virginia Mayo)

    NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg speaks with the media as he arrives for a meeting with EU defense ministers at the EU Council building in Brussels on Tuesday, Nov. 18, 2014. (AP Photo/Virginia Mayo)  (The Associated Press)

  • Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, left, smiles looking at German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier as they leave a news conference in Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, Nov. 18, 2014. German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, who is shuttling between Kiev and Moscow on Tuesday, urged the Ukrainian government and pro-Russian separatists to respect their cease-fire agreement, which has helped to halt ground combat but failed to stop daily artillery exchanges. (AP Photo/Ivan Sekretarev)

    Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, left, smiles looking at German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier as they leave a news conference in Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, Nov. 18, 2014. German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, who is shuttling between Kiev and Moscow on Tuesday, urged the Ukrainian government and pro-Russian separatists to respect their cease-fire agreement, which has helped to halt ground combat but failed to stop daily artillery exchanges. (AP Photo/Ivan Sekretarev)  (The Associated Press)

  • Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov is seen through German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier's glasses during their talks in Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, Nov. 18, 2014. German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, who is shuttling between Kiev and Moscow on Tuesday, urged the Ukrainian government and pro-Russian separatists to respect their cease-fire agreement, which has helped to halt ground combat but failed to stop daily artillery exchanges. (AP Photo/Ivan Sekretarev)

    Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov is seen through German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier's glasses during their talks in Moscow, Russia, Tuesday, Nov. 18, 2014. German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, who is shuttling between Kiev and Moscow on Tuesday, urged the Ukrainian government and pro-Russian separatists to respect their cease-fire agreement, which has helped to halt ground combat but failed to stop daily artillery exchanges. (AP Photo/Ivan Sekretarev)  (The Associated Press)

Germany's foreign minister is urging the Ukrainian government and pro-Russian separatists to respect the cease-fire agreement.

The continuing military conflict in eastern Ukraine has killed more than 4,000 people and displaced a million, according to the U.N. The Sept. 5 accords froze the position of front lines between the sides although heavy artillery fire is still killing civilians and combatants daily.

German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, who is shuttling between Kiev and Moscow on Tuesday in a bid to ease the tensions, told reporters in Kiev that both sides should stick to the Minsk accords however "imperfect" they are.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Monday accused Russia of undermining peace across Europe, warning that regional conflicts like in eastern Ukraine could cause disturbances in other post-Soviet countries.