Pentagon chief urges 'immediate' Ukraine ceasefire in call with Russian counterpart
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US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin urged Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu on Friday to move immediately to implement a ceasefire in Ukraine, in their first conversation since before the war began, the Pentagon said.
But Moscow has shown no indication of pulling back and is believed by Western intelligence of wanting to take control of a wide swath of southern Ukraine stretching along the Black Sea to Moldova.
The call also came as Finland and Sweden have expressed the desire to join the NATO defense alliance, a direct consequence of Russia's attack on Ukraine, which is not part of NATO.