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9 December 2019

Will there be peace in eastern Ukraine?

Ukrainian and Russian leaders to meet in Paris for first time on Monday.

Ukraine elected a president in April whose top priority was to end the bloody conflict in the country's east.

More than 13,000 people have been killed in the fighting between the Ukrainian army and Russian-backed separatists.

Now, for the first time since he came into office, Volodymyr Zelenskyy is meeting Russian President Vladimir Putin.

French and German leaders are mediating the talks taking place in Paris starting on Monday.

The so-called Normandy Group last met to discuss ways to end the fighting more than three years ago.

Zelenskyy is optimistic he can bring peace to eastern Ukraine. But his critics see him as a political novice and fear he might give away too much to end the conflict.

His opponents have protested ahead of the Paris meeting.

So what is at stake for Russia and Ukraine?

Presenter: Halla Mohiedeen

Guests:

Oleksiy Haran - Professor of comparative politics at Kyiv-Mohyla Academy

Viktor Olevich - Lead analyst at the Moscow-based think-tank, Centre for Actual Politics

Anna Matveeva - Visiting senior research fellow at King's College London

Source: Al Jazeera