Putin calls on Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan to de-escalate

Russian President Putin and Turkish President Erdogan meet in Samarkand

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russian President Vladimir Putin held telephone talks with the leaders of Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan following clashes on the border of the Central Asian republics, the Kremlin said on Sunday.

"Vladimir Putin urged the sides to prevent further escalation and to take measures to resolve the situation exclusively by peaceful, political and diplomatic means as soon as possible, and confirmed Russia's readiness to provide the necessary assistance to ensure stability in the Kyrgyz-Tajik border region."

(Reporting by Maxim Rodionov; editing by Guy Faulconbridge)