Chancellor Olaf Scholz wants to continue his attempts to mediate in the Ukraine war with Russian President Vladimir Putin. The war is threatening to change towards a trench warfare, said government spokesman Steffen Hebestreit on Monday in Berlin. In this phase it is important “that you try to start talking again about how you can stop killing and shooting”.

Scholz took the initiative and last week he phoned Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and then, after weeks of radio silence, also with Putin. He’s trying to “walk the diplomatic path again, no matter how difficult it is.”

Scholz agreed with Putin to continue the conversation. The situation is very difficult and muddled, but nothing should be left untried.

During the phone call last week, Scholz again asked Putin to come to a ceasefire in the Ukraine war as quickly as possible.