Dec 22, 8:42 AM EST

Nazarbayev: Ukraine conflict is 'nonsense'

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MOSCOW (AP) -- Kazakhstan's president says the conflict in eastern Ukraine is "nonsense" and is calling on Russia and Ukraine to find a way to resolve it.

Nursultan Nazarbayev's comments Monday, after a meeting with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, could carry weight because Kazakhstan is part of a Russia-dominated trade bloc that Moscow sees as a counterweight to the European Union.

Nazarbayev did not single out one side as being in fault in the conflict between Ukrainian forces and pro-Russia separatists that has killed around 4,700 people. Moscow denies allegations that it is providing soldiers and equipment for the rebels.

"I call on Russia and Ukraine to think about finding compromise," he said, according to the Interfax news agency. "This situation is nonsense and should not be taking place."

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